April 12, 2009
Hall of Famer Mickey McClelland dies on
"Mickey" McClelland, the first recipient of the Walt Hunting
Award as the top male athlete at Denfeld, died on Easter Sunday,
April 12, at St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester, Minn.
A member of the Hunter Hall of Fame,
McClelland was a versatile athlete at Denfeld, lettering for three
years in football, basketball, baseball and track.
He excelled in track and field in
the high and low hurdles, setting several school and district records,
and winning the high hurdles at the Minnesota state track meet in
1956. He was also Denfeld's homecoming king his senior year.
He graduated with the class of 1956
and went on to attended the University of Minnesota, where he played
football as a freshman. He later attended the University of Minnesota
Duluth and the University of Wisconsin-Superior.
McClelland served in the Minnesota
Air National Guard with the 148th Fighter Wing for seven years.
He was a bartender by trade, working in Duluth and Superior, and
later at the Hole-in-the-Wall Casino in Danbury, Wis.
He was born on July 19, 1938 in Duluth
to Earl and Effie (Pihlaja) McClelland.
He is survived by his companion Teddie
Hirsch, stepdaughter Jamie East; step granddaughter Jackie McKay,
"son" Matt Swenson, cousin Molly Wright of California
and many other cousins of the Pihlaja, Pary and Jacobson families.