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

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From: Greta Mikelonis (August 2005)


My name is Greta Mikelonis. I live in Chicago. I knew and was friends with Michael.

I met Michael through choir at Holy Name Cathedral here in Chicago. We sang together for almost two years before he moved to New York. He was part of a group of us who would go for "sectionals" after rehearsal and stay out too late before going home to go to work the next day. Michael lived a couple of blocks north of me the majority of his time in Chicago, so often he would walk me to my street afterwards.

In August of 2003 we had our choir retreat, a one day event at the Quigley Seminary, close to where I live. Since we hadn't seen each other for a couple of months over the summer, Michael and I left together and he walked me home. We were talking and sharing summer stories and he dropped me off at my door. When I saw him at rehearsal the following Thursday he looked at me quite seriously and said, "Greta, I had the worst time last week and it is all your fault." I was flabbergasted and had no idea what he was talking about. Then he proceeded to tell me that he had ridden his bicycle to the retreat because he was running late and because we were talking at the end he had walked me home and forgotten that his bicycle was chained to the stand in front of the seminary and the seat to his bicycle was inside the seminary under the chair that he had been sitting in. He had realized a couple of hours later that he had forgotten his bike, but since everyone had left the seminary he had to ride it home without the seat and then collect the seat the following Monday. Of course, since he had been talking to me, it was "all my fault." We both were almost on the floor laughing by the time he finished the story.

This event summarizes the kind of friend Michael was to me - willing to talk and listen and forget about the practicalities of life for a while. We went out for sushi, pancakes, and just had a great time together. I feel lucky to have known him.

This year, as we've done the last several years, the choirs at Holy Name are going to be singing Mozart's Requiem for All Soul's Day on November 2nd. Matt Walsh, our conductor, has announced that this year, it will be in honor of Michael.

Greta Mikelonis

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