I miss you brother. Do the Happy Dance with John till I get there
Uncle Mike will always be in my heart and on my mind. My favorite moments with Uncle Mike were on Sunday afternoons that I spent at my grandmother's house after church. Laying on the carpet in front of her console TV watching Bob Ross paint his "happy trees". Changing channels back and forth between that and a show about the different types of fighter planes that have had an impact on wars. Those were some of my favorite times as a kid. Lying on my stomach next to Uncle Mike and asking him question after question, and he would answer every single one. For the longest time I wanted to fly in the Air Force because I wanted to be able to talk planes and impress him.
as told by his sisters and brother
When we were kids, we did everything together. Dad called us his little wild Indians. When we walked anywhere Cheryl and Michael would walk in front of Mom holding hands, and Mom would walk behind them holding Linda's and Harold's hands.
When we played, Mike was always the leader. Everyone who knows him will not be surprised to hear that he planned exactly what we would do, who would be what, and when it was time to change games. He even made up games. Our favorite was "run away kids". We ran away by spaceship from our wicked step-mother. We used to drive our mother crazy with that one. Of course, Michael was the pilot and Cheryl was the navigator. The little kids were just along for the ride, but there was always an adventure and Mike was always the hero that saved us.
Christmas was our favorite time of year. It still is for all of us. Maybe it is because no matter what, no matter where Dad was, he came home for Christmas. So for Christmas we have special stories and memories. For example, Michael also led the way for "Operation Midnight". This involved months of planning every year to get ready for Christmas. Looking back, we're not sure what the planning was about since the basic concept never changed. Mike waited until the parents went to sleep on Christmas Eve, then he woke up the rest of us so we could look at the presents under the tree. His rules were strict - you had to stay about 5 feet away from the tree and you couldn't touch anything. After we looked for what seemed like an hour, we'd throw Harold into Dad and Mom's room to wake them up - hey, he was little back then and Mike figured he was still cute enough that they wouldn't kill him.
A couple of the things about Mike really stood out. First, he had a dry sense of humor and wicked since of justice. Harold has the best story demonstrating just how ingenious Michael could be. Harold got in to Mike's collectable comics - one his prize possessions. Michael took the mouthpiece from Harold's brand-new trombone and filled it from top to bottom with peanut butter mixed with cayenne pepper. He put it back in the case and didn't say a word when Harold headed out to school the next day trombone in hand. This story is particularly ironic considering the fact that Michael ended up giving Harold all of his comics before he passed away.
Mike had a strong sense of self his entire life. This became clear when he was a baby and bit the puppy back when the puppy bit him. He never missed a day of school, refused to charge his lunch the day he forget his lunch money, and never, never let anybody pick on his family.
Just to be clear, he wasn't always tough; he had a soft side too. He secretly fed stray cats and was known to get attached to children even though he would call them rug rats, ankle biters, or curtain climbers. He used to say Linda's daughter Cheri didn't talk because she didn't have anything that anyone else deserved to hear.
When he joined the Marines at 17 years old, he got his first chance to be a "Lonely child". It was something we had heard our whole lives. He'd get fed up with us and announce, "I wish I were a lonely child" - it was his favorite response when we came to him for entertainment ideas or solutions to our problems. He was our leader - who else could we go to? He didn't really get away though, when he was a marine they made him a "duty daddy" and he got to be the leader for the whole barracks full of jar heads. He came home after 6 years. Big brother for 3 siblings was enough for him.
After Dad passed away in 1987, Mike stepped up and took responsibility leading the family. He made sure Mom had what she needed and we stayed "in-line". Nobody ever had to worry that they wouldn't have help from Mike if they asked. Mike never said no - but sometimes we had to listen to a lecture before he rescued us from our own bad decisions.
Like we've said, Mike is our leader. He led the way our whole life, and now he's leading the way again. We know he's in Heaven. We know he's with our Heavenly Father and we know he's with our Dad. Mostly we know that in the blink of an eye, we'll all be up there with him. But for a short time, he's a lonely child, and we're all lonely here without him.
I worked with Mike and was always impressed with his expertise and friendliness. My sincere condolences to his family and friends.
You are in my thoughts and prayers.
We will miss Mike; he touched so many of our lives.
What I am feeling right now is hard to put into words.
May the Almighty God fine a place in his kingdom for his soul.
May the Almighty God console the Angle family for the irrepairable loss.
I worked with Mike for six years and he always has answers for my questions.
Josephs Anudokem, Sr., Temple, Texas