Michael D. Bausano, 68, a resident of Southpoint near Lac Labelle, died suddenly on Tuesday, December 5, 2017.
He was born in Detroit on April 18, 1949 to John Bausano and Stella (Kozlowski) Bausano, one of 2 children. His dad moved to Calumet when Mike was young and he was raised by his Aunt Kate (Bausano) and Tony Tomasi at the little yellow house with white picket fence on 6th street; and then by his dad and new wife, Kathrine (Szatkowski) Bausano. Mike met Donna (Swetich) while they were in college. Their first date was on December 21, 1968; they were engaged on December 21, 1969; and married a year later on December 21, 1970.
Mike was a graduate of Calumet High, class of 1967; a 1971 graduate of Michigan Tech, with a degree in Chemistry; and he received his Master of Science in Management from Rensselear Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, in 1974. His first job was with Uniroyal Agricultural Chemicals in 1971 in Naugatuck Ct, as a bench chemist. But he had a yearning to be in sales and in 1974 moved to Findlay OH to be an ag chemical salesman. He excelled, and in 1976 he was promoted to Western Regional Sales Manager, headquartered in Fresno, CA and was responsible for sales growth and development from the Pacific to the Rockies. He was the youngest Regional Sales Manager and took what was considered a flat sales growth territory and quadrupled sales.
Using his knowledge of the Ag Chem business, he started D&M, an advertising specialty company selling imprinted items and apparel to Agricultural related business owners. He eventually left Uniroyal and grew D&M to over a 12 person company with several offices in CA. He sold to small and large companies alike, including the AT&T PRO AM and the Vatican. He earned many specialty company sponsored trips and he and his wife were fortunate enough to visit places like Brazil, Argentina, Australia, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Holland, Germany, and France. They have been to the Vatican to hear Mass with Pope John Paul, took a boat ride up the Amazon, saw the Roman Forum and Catacombs, took a helicopter up to the glaciers in New Zealand and snorkeled on the Great Barrier Reef.
Mike and his wife spent 22 years in California. They were one of the first families of the newly formed Holy Spirit Catholic Church. Mike was an usher and active in the Men’s Club. He was a Third Degree member of the Knights of Columbus. He was also active in Ag related clubs and organizations as well as those associated with the Advertising Specialty Industry.
In 1999 Mike and his wife moved back to their roots in Calumet, MI, to be close to their families. In 1994 they remodeled a building on 5th street which was to become the Calumet Mercantile, an old fashioned themed candy and gift shop. Mike sold his Advertising Specialty Company before he moved back to Calumet but continued to work as an ad specialty salesman for a number of years and run the Mercantile as well. The Calumet Mercantile had a door joining it to the shop next door, Copper World, owned by his brother Tony. The Bausano brothers had side by side stores until Mike sold the Mercantile to Tony in 2016, due to Mike’s poor health.
Of the jobs that he had and the businesses that he owned, Mike would tell you that his greatest joy and the best job he ever had was being an adjunct professor at Michigan Tech, in the School of Business. He taught classes in Sales and Entrepreneurship. He also taught at Findlandia for a few years. He was inspired by the enthusiasm and optimism, energy and intelligence of the young adults he taught. Many went on to their own successful sales careers.
Mike loved to travel, to learn about new places and cultures. He loved working in his yard, keeping his grass green, building paths and benches and outdoor lighting was a passion. He had a wood shop and knew how to use it. He built benches and tables and knew how to fix or repair most everything Donna broke. He restored a 1928 Model A. He loved photography and at one time had a dark room and developed his own pictures. He was fascinated by astronomy and had a large telescope when he was in California and would spend nights in the mountains star gazing. He never tired of learning new things. He was smart and funny; loved to tell stories, and wasn’t afraid of new adventures. Mike put his dreams into reality, he had lifelong friends, and was a mentor to many.
He is survived by his wife Donna; his brother Anthony “Tony” Bausano and wife Joyce and their children:
Tim and wife Jenny of Calumet and their children Abby and Emma; Chris (Voelker) and husband Abe and their children Alex, Nick, and Thomas, also of Calumet; Brad and wife Cathy of Rochester MN, and their children Oliver and Ava; Jason and wife Fernanda of Charleston SC and their children Bella and Caue.
Also surviving is his sister-in-law Rose (Swetich) Zawadski and her husband Andy and daughter Carla, of Oxford, MI; sister-in law Debra (Swetich) Simmons of Springfield, MO; brother-in-law Edward C Swetich of Tumwater, WA and his son Luke Swetich of Lacey, WA and his son Dorian. He is also survived by cousins.
Mike’s was a life well lived. His legacy will carry on with the business he built in Calumet, the family he was so proud of, his many forever friends and the unconditional love that his wife will carry with her until she is once again with him.
Mike was a member of St Paul’s Church.
The Funeral Mass will be held on Monday, December 11, 2017 at St. Paul the Apostle Church in Calumet. Friends may call at the Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home in Calumet on Sunday, December 10, 2017 from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
A graveside service will take place in the spring at the Lake View Cemetery.
Online condolences for the family may be left at www.ericksoncrowleypeterson.com
The Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home in Calumet is assisting the family with the arrangements.