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Michael Kalsman was born July 6th, 1930 in Santa Monica, CA. He died in Yuma August 10, 2017 at 87. He moved to Yuma with his family in the 1940s, enrolling in Fourth Avenue Junior High. While attending Yuma High School, he had a part time job as the stock boy for the R&B Drugstore in downtown Yuma. After graduation from Yuma High in 1948, Mike went on to the University of Arizona and enrolled in the College of Pharmacy.
Upon graduation from the University of Arizona, Mike joined the army. He was sent to Fitzsimmons Army Hospital where he was assigned as an orderly in the morgue but moonlighted as a pharmacist at Presbyterian Hospital in Denver. His life was about to change forever! He met his future wife, Kathryn, who was also a pharmacist. She agreed to marry him on one condition.he would move her to a warmer climate! They spent their honeymoon in January 1956 exploring Arizona on their way to Yuma.
Together Mike and Kathy began their lives in Yuma. Mike worked for Paul and Tom Guisti at Uptown Drug. In 1967, Mike and Tom opened the Pill Box Pharmacy next to the Stardust Hotel. After a few years Mike and Kathy became the sole owners of the Pill Box Pharmacy and later opened Kachina Pharmacy. Mike served as a Board member of the Arizona Pharmacy Association for many years and also served as president of the Board.
Mike was active in many community groups. He had been in the Lions Club since the 1950s and was very active in their sight conservation mission. As his children grew he was active on the boards for Camp Fire and Boy Scouts. He was a Mason and a Shriner.
Faith was very important to Mike. He was an early member of Sierra Vista Presbyterian Church. He was active in many of their missions such as an orphanage in San Luis, Sonora, taking Christmas gifts and goods to the Native Americans of the Tohono O'odham Nation. He taught junior high Sunday school for more than 20 years. He served his church as a Deacon and also on the church board as an Elder.
Mike and Kathy were very active in Hospice of Yuma at its beginning. Mike help to educate the doctors in Yuma regarding medications for the terminally ill. With this information, the doctors were better able to help their patients die with dignity and pain free.
Mike leaves behind his loving wife of 61 years Kathy, his 3 children Lorri (Tom) Podolsky, Phil Kalsman and Michael (Mary) Kalsman, his 7 grandchildren Alex (Liz) Podolsky and Taylor (Joe) Andrade, Hannah and Molly Kalsman and Delaney, Erin and Cameron Kalsman and his great grandson Henry Podolsky who was the apple of his eye.
The family would like to thank all those who kept Mike going the last few years, Dr. Moor, Ann from Caring Touch, Spencer from Haven of Yuma, Cassandra from Synergy and most importantly his Hospice of Yuma care team Dr. Parker, Rene, Liz and Blanca.
Funeral services will be held at Sierra Vista Presbyterian Church, Saturday August 19, at 10am. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Mike's memory to Hospice of Yuma or Sierra Vista Presbyterian Church.