Michael J. Fuchs

April 5, 1949 – Jan. 30, 2021

Michael Joseph Fuchs, the fourth son of Hugh and Margaret Fuchs, passed away Jan. 30, 2021, at Rio Grande Hospital.

Mike grew up on the family farm-ranch and was active in animal projects through our local 4-H organization. He entered his fat steer in the livestock show in Phoenix, Ariz., in December 1963 and registered Hereford bulls at the National Western Stock Show in Denver in 1980.

Mike attended Del Norte High School and graduated in 1967 during which he was active in sports and had an excellent academic record. He attended Colorado School of Mines in Golden and the University of Colorado in Boulder where he received a BS in Civil Engineering in 1974.

After graduation, Mike worked on various water projects in Dillon; Dallas, Texas; and Lincoln, Neb. He decided that ranching was his first love and returned to the family ranch, Fuchs Ranches, Inc. in 1981. He assumed the role of ranch manager in 1982. 

Mike’s interest in ranching was complemented by his interest in agricultural and engineering expertise. This was demonstrated by his supervision of the spillway construction at Fuchs Reservoir in the mid 1980’s. His ability was also seen in various irrigation structures, namely the Pinos Creek Division where the east and west branches of Pinos Creek are formed. He received the honor of Water User of the Year in 2002. Mike was always interested in improvements with excellent choices in methods and equipment including installing a pivot sprinkler on the original Fuchs homestead to raise hay with less water. 

Mike was preceded in death by his parents, Hugh and Margaret and his oldest brother, Fred.

Fred’s wife Charlotte of Del Norte; niece Julie (Bill) Lohr of Rangely, and children; nephew Stace (Loni) Fuchs of Del Norte and children also survive. Surviving brothers are Hugh Lee Roy (Gayle Toombs) Fuchs of Del Norte; niece Erica Ronska and son of California and Richard Fuchs of Tarzana, Calif.; niece Margaret (Russell) Montano and children; niece Laura (Rob) Dolan and children all of California. 

Mike will be missed by family members and many friends. Cremation was chosen and no services are planned. Arrangements in care of Strohmayer’s Funeral Home.