Michael loved life and lived it to the fullest. He did more in his short 27 years than most do in a full lifetime. He will be missed terribly by all those whose lives he touched.

Memories of Michael

« Back to list of Memories

From: Gary Sandburg (July 2005)

I have heard Tom and Bette mention more than once that I helped spark Mike's interest in pursuing a career in engineering. While I may have had a small influence on that decision, in my opinion, Mike would have been successful in whatever field he chose. As for the engineering, Mike interned for me one summer at Heatilator. It was more than just working for me or together though, we were friends too. The thing that sticks in my mind most about that summer had nothing to do with engineering. It was Mike's ability to interact with everyone that had a great influence on me. Heatilator regularly hires people with disabilities, and there was one young man (Jeff Edwards) that was "special". He could be difficult to communicate with, and he was easily upset if something out of his routine happened. Mike was able to befriend Jeff, and watching that helped me to understand how to deal with Jeff as well. I think Mike taught me more that year than I taught him.

The other memory of Mike that sticks in my mind happened on the golf course. Mike and I played in the Green Acres Men's Club Championship with his father and probably John Nelson one year. On hole number six, Mike hit his drive into the trees, hacked it out of the trees (poorly I might add), was somehow able to put his third shot on the green and made the putt for a par. During this entire ordeal, Mike did not lose his temper or even swear over the bad shots. All he said after he made the putt was "that proved to me to never give up". I wish I could be that positive when things don't go my way. I will try harder to be more like Mike. The world will be a better place if other people did too.

I will never forget Mike. I hope I can raise my kids to be as good a human being as he was.

Gary Sandburg

« Back to list of Memories

Share your own memories and photos!
We want this list of stories to go on forever. Please help by sending your stories and photos to memories@formichaelburke.com.