MC&MCA lost a good friend and industry leader on Friday June 2nd. Below is Michael Christian “MC” Gresser obituary. We send our condolences to his family.
Gresser, Michael Christian “MC” passed away peacefully on June 2, with his children nearby. Born on the family farm in Albany, Minnesota on February 18th, 1932, the youngest of six children. The farm was lost late in the Great Depression due to his father’s illness. He passed away when M.C. was 14. His oldest brother Gerry taught him to lay brick and soon they were hopping trains for the Twin Cities working as commercial masons to support the family. He was a foreman of his first masonry crew at age 19, running the brick work on landmarks like the St. Paul Radison Hotel. He married Joan (Krebsbach) on June 11, 1955, and they proceeded to travel the country chasing large masonry jobs. They had their first daughter, Michelle, in Grand Forks, North Dakota while he ran the Airforce Base project there. Work also took them to Davenport, Iowa where their second daughter Mary Jo was born. They returned home and settled in Eagan in 1963. In 1968 they had their third child, Michael J. A year later they started GRESSSER Incorporated in their basement. He ran the sales and field while she ran the books. Over the years GRESSER became one of the largest and most respected concrete and masonry contractors in the nation, employing more than 200 people, working in 19 states and building iconic structures such as the IDS Crystal Court, the Minneapolis Hilton Towers, US Bank Tower and TCF (now Huntington) Bank Stadium. M.C. and Joan sold the company to Michael J. in 2001. Today the company is based in Shakopee, thriving on the tradition and values he created. Over the years he became a dynamic entrepreneur, involved in local politics and business ventures. He founded an exotic car dealership, developed and owned real estate, owned a hotel, started a general contracting firm and became majority shareholder in several community banks. He loved to help people and prided himself on picking winners. He started construction of the first ever Lifetime Fitness in Eagan by handshake before they secured financing because he had faith that Bahram Akradi would get him paid. They became lifelong friends. In 2003 he backed Mike J. and Matt Barron as they founded Recon Wall Systems. The company now operates in 14 countries with four divisions. He served on Recon’s board and still owned his shares when he died. He was also a Nuevo investor in Tradition Bank Shares and cherished his friendship with Reid Evenson at the bank. He and Joan were members of the Twin Cities Viper Club who, especially the Aszmanns and Bretts, were like family. He did all this while enjoying the lake with his family and being a supportive husband, father, grandfather, uncle and friend. He devoted his life to elevating his family to a better station and truly outdistanced his greatest ambitions. A life very well lived. He is proceeded in death by his parents Barbara and Michael Joseph, his brothers Jerome, Leeander and Ralph, his sisters Lorraine (Grimes) and Erma (Hollenhorst) and his beloved wife of 62 years, Joan. He is survived by his daughter Michelle Walston (James) and Mary Jo Stackhouse (Steven – deceased), son Mike (Amy) and grandchildren James (Victoria) and Elizabeth Walston, Michael R. (Sarah), Ellie, Emma and Harrison Gresser and greatgrandchildren Jane and James Daniel Walston. We are grateful for the care given to MC by the staff at N.C. Little Hospice. Memorials preferred to N.C. Little Memorial Hospice, 7019 Lynmar Ln., Edina, MN 55435. Visitation will be held on Thursday, June 8 from 4-7 PM at Washburn-McReavy Edina Chapel, 5000 W. 50th Street and Hwy 100 (952-920-3996). washburn-mcreavy.com. Mass of Christian Burial on Friday, June 9, 10:30 AM at Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church, 5071 Eden Ave., Edina, (952-929-3317). olgparish.org. A luncheon reception to follow.
Published on June 4, 2023