He was born June 12, 1957 in Monticello, Utah, the son of Newell A. Bastian and Vonda Larsen Bastian. He graduated from Grand County High School in 1975 and made Moab his home most of his adult life. He married Karen Branstetter and later divorced. Michael worked various jobs including running a service station at Center and Main, hauling uranium ore for McFarland & Hullinger, prospecting with his Uncle Jake Bastian and working on a drill rig. It was on that job that an accident handling drill pipe occurred and crushed vertebras in his back. After that accident he became a stay-at-home dad and raised his four boys. Michael would do anything for his boys; he raised them by himself, cooking, cleaning, shopping and nursing them back to health when they were ill.
He loved the La Sal Mountains and spent as many summers as possible up there with his boys camping and fishing. He had a great love for horses, especially Quarter horses. He and his dad, Newell, raised many beautiful colts, which Newell and Michael found they wanted to keep them all and so they did and the herd grew.
He also loved motorcycles, from dirt bikes to Harleys and in his most recent years he and his son Zach both bought Harleys so that they could ride together. His first real love was his children and then horses and motorcycles. Michael had a heart as big as they get. He would drop everything to help someone in need.
He felt a real need to look after his sisters and that he did. He was always stopping by or calling on the phone just to tell them he loved them. He never met a stranger and would strike up a conversation with anyone he came in contact with. He recently spent eleven days with his sister, Terry, and her husband, Mark, in Ohio. He had a wonderful time with them, attending a Cleveland Indians baseball game, camping, boating on Lake Erie, attending Oktoberfest and just enjoying time with this family and friends.
He also loved his 11 grandkids (Tyler, Vinnie, Emma, Ember, Alligha, Iziah, Kahsiah, Jaeda, Zoe, Gracen & Gabriel Jr.) and spent as much time as possible with them. Michael is survived by four sons: Tyson Rockwell, Houston (Rachelle) Bastian, Zach and Gabriel Bastian, all residing in Moab. Four sisters: Daphen Ranch of Moab, Sharon Hunter (Dennis) of Harrisville, Utah, Sandy Bastian of Moab and Terry Cipriani (Mark, Sr.) of Rocky River, Ohio. He lost a daughter, Jeanna, to crib death in 1990. This was a devastating blow to the family being the only girl with four brothers. Michael is also preceded in death by his father, Newell, and mother, Vonda, nephew, Michael Cipriani, grandparents and many aunts and uncles.
Michael’s infectious laugh and contagious smile will be dearly missed by all who knew him.
Funeral services were held Tuesday, Sept. 19 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on 4th North in Moab, Utah and interment was at Sunset Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Grand County, Utah.
You may send condolences to the family at www.spanishvalleymortuary.com.