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Aug. 2, 1944 – Jan. 18, 2023
Gatzman obit pic

On Wednesday, January 18, 2023, Michael “Mike” Alfred Gatzman, of Livermore, CA, a beloved husband, devoted father, grandfather and brother, received his wings at the young age of 78. Mike was born in Oakdale, CA, on August 2, 1944, to Stanley Wayne Gatzman and Ruth Anne Corrigan-Gatzman. By all accounts he was an energetic, mischievous and vivacious child.

After graduating from Oakdale High School in 1962, Mike attended and played football at the University of California, Davis, then transferred and graduated from Cal Poly, SLO, with his Bachelor’s Degree in Agricultural Business Management, where he was awarded the Outstanding Senior in California State Polytechnic College’s School of Agriculture. Mike continued his graduate studies at Washington State University, earning his Master’s Degree in Agricultural Economics.

After graduate school, Mike’s career in agricultural business management and economics was quite diverse. He started off as an instructor at Cal Poly, then spent time as an investment cattle broker; from there he moved on to manage a feedlot, then served as President of the Livermore Production Credit Association (PCA). Mike transitioned to roses as Projects Manager for Devor Nursery, and went on to become Farm Manager for Wente Vineyards. Mike semi-retired and started Gatzman Consulting Services, allowing him to spend more time with his wife and chase around his grandchildren. One of his honorable achievements was an acknowledgement by the Alameda County Farm Bureau, awarding him Agriculturist of the Year in 2007. Mike will be remembered for being a humble man of his word, who had numerous significant contributions that impacted the agricultural community.

In high school Mike met and fell in love with Meredith Jane Hawkins, the forever twinkle in his eye. They married on August 21, 1965. The love they shared for more than 57 years gave them six children: Eric, Heidi (Tony), Nancy (Jason), Marcy (Kelly), Nick (Janie), and Cindi (Patrick). He will be forever cherished and remembered by his 17 grandchildren: Madison, Eric, Alexis, Kynsi (Zac), Kalli, Kayci, Sam, Jeremiah, Kelsey, Logan, Allison, Justin, Andrew, Katie, Sylas, Layla and Chase. Fond memories live on with his sisters Jean (Jim) Crandal and Mary Trotter (Tom), his brother Bob (Lillian) Gatzman, niece Jamie, and nephew Rick. Mike was preceded in death by his infant son Eric Wayne, father Stanley Wayne Gatzman, and mother Ruth Anne Gatzman.

Not only did Mike have a strong work ethic, he unselfishly made time for others. He coached his children on numerous soccer, baseball and softball teams as well as served on league committees. When he wasn’t coaching Mike could be found firing up all the parents on the sidelines with the cowbell to celebrate exciting moments of the game. His children and grandchildren knew he was always there to fiercely support and encourage them.

Mike was a faithful man which was evident in all that he did. He was an active member at St. Charles Borromeo Church, since 1977. He spent many evenings cooking at Open Heart Kitchen, always making sure there was plenty of garlic!

Mike’s life created beautiful memories that will always be in our hearts, he will be loved forever.

Family and Friends are welcome to attend a Celebration of Mike’s Life. Mass will be held on Saturday, February 11, 2023, at 11 a.m., at Saint Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, in Livermore.

In Lieu of flowers please consider a donation to Open Heart Kitchen (1141 Catalina Drive #137, Livermore, CA 94550; or Please include a notation for Vineyard 2.0 Project.

The Oakdale (Calif.) Leader

The Riverbank (Calif.) News

Feb. 1, 2023