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Michael Ruggiano Obituary
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July 21, 2018

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July 21, 2018

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 Memories & Condolences
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July 22, 2017
Pedro L Machado ; I grew up with Mike on 111 st was a very good guy and friend ;my condolences to Sheila and the kids
April 3, 2007
My Dearest Michael it has been a year today since you went home to be with our Lord and I am not even sure how it went by, it seems all a blur to me. One day I am rubbing your head and talking to you; the next I am saying “Oh how my heart aches,” and a year has passed us by. Where did it go? When will this ache end? Will it ever?

I pass by your Island at least once a week and it reminds so much of how you really enjoyed “Lake Ruggiano” and it brings both tears and a smile to my face. Every time I see someone riding a motorcycle it’s as though I am seeing you. When I walk outside in the woods, it reminds me of how much you liked it up here, to the point where you even thought about purchasing the land next door. Oh the ache that I have!

Everywhere I look I see you; I suppose that is the way it should be, why we have memories, to keep those that we love close to our hearts even when they are no longer on this earth.

I rejoice knowing that you have gone through those Heavenly gates where there are streets of gold as pure as glass, with foundation walls filled with precious stones, one of those stones which represents you for you were truly one of God’s children. We rejoice and yet we ache both at the same time. Will this ache ever end?

Oh how many lives you touched here on earth, the changes that have taken place within the hearts of the people that you left behind. The ministry that has been set up that will touch so many more. Oh how happy God must be to have you home with Him, smiling down and checking in!

You are so much a part of me and my life, that when I worship I see both you and Jesus smiling and reaching out, letting me know that you are giving me joy and peace but still my heart aches and there are tears once again. Will this ache ever end?

It is hard being so far away from your family! To know that they are missing you so much and I am not there to give them hugs! I am so thankful for the many people that have reached out in Christian Love and have given those hugs and support that I am not able to give. For God has watched out for your family and placed the right people in their lives, to give them those hugs and love that they need from time to time.

We were there for Thanksgiving with family and friends and there was still such emptiness inside, joy and sadness both at the same time. How hard it was seeing Rachael laying there in your bed, crying and saying I miss my daddy and want him here! What do you say to a child then, how do you comfort her as she cries on your bed? Sheila came in and did her thing! Oh how proud you would be to see Sheila standing so strong for your children that are crying for their daddy to come home and missing him so! Will this ache ever end?

Will this pain ever subside, will the tears ever stop, does it get easier as another year goes by? I rejoice and ache both at the same time. Spring is here and Easter is coming signs of new life and a time of rejoicing. Yet someone’s missing and there is emptiness inside!

Do you know how much we love you, did we tell you enough? Oh how the hearts ache now that you are living up above! But I can see your smiling face and know that you are looking down, watching over your wife and children, while wearing your crown! Rejoicing knowing that your life has just begun, living with the Father, Spirit and Son!

I could go on and on but there are not enough words that could explain just exactly the way I feel inside. So I leave you now, not saying goodbye but as you said before “See You Later!” Thank you for being a part of my life and having my sister as your wife, giving me nieces and nephews to love that reflect yours and Sheila’s love! I love you with all of my heart! See You Later!

Linda your sister in Christ!
April 1, 2007
One Year and Missing You

Well, Michael, here we are coming up on a year.
Since you've gone Home to be with the Lord.
I just want to say, I’m missing you.

So hard to believe it’s nearing a year, Mike.
Our grief runs deep and long.
Harder still to believe you’re really gone,
Except for the fact that, I’m missing you.

Yes, hard to believe all the holidays came one by one,
Special occasions, birthdays, have all come and gone.
Been difficult, bitter/sweet, hard without you.
Waited for you to walk into the room. You didn’t.
I thought I heard you call. No, it wasn’t you at all. I’m missing you.

Yet can’t deny the outpouring of love and care this year,
From family and friends, charity that can only comes from within.
Friendships have been forged. Grown close to your church family,
Special friends. We celebrate together.
“Bitter/sweet” bond, if you will.
We share so much of you with them.
All the while missing you.

We celebrated Mother’s Day and Father’s day,
Celebrated your children. Knowing their character, integrity,
responsibility for each other is to celebrate you as a Father.
They are a true reflection of you and Sheila.
Raised them with your values and principles. You taught them well.
It spoke volumes for you as a father, Sheila as a mother.
Still, tears came easily, sadness all around. Quiet. Solemn.
Missing you.

Michael Jr. took his place at the head of the table.
Rightfully so, it was empty without you there.
Couldn’t help but notice, “How well he wore your chair.”
You’d be proud of him; we are; Proud of Nicole, too.
Still, bitter/sweet not having you here.
Missing you.

It’s been quite a year! And so it went. We plowed through.
Day after day, night after night.
I wait for the day to break me. It doesn’t.
The night comes and then it goes.
Time has its way. It sneaks in and takes my tomorrows
And turns them into yesterdays. All the while missing you.

Thanksgiving and Christmas were hardest of all. Knew they would be.
It was particularly hard for the kids,
They took such delight being with you at Christmas time,
Taking them shopping and, oh, yes, in your gift buying.
They knew it was always special; those gifts that only you would buy.
Special care was taken in our gift-giving this year.
Hard shoes to fill - yours! We gave “special” and with “care”,
And said “this is from Dad” or “this is from Mike”
Again, bitter/sweet. All the while missing you.

It doesn’t feel right, ending this year. Entering into the next.
Will we enter into a “new season of grief?”
Will it be less? Will it be more? What to expect?
Yes, a new year. Yet, not quite finished with the first. Is one ever?

My thoughts are of you, mostly in the dark of night.
I wonder if I remembered to tell you all the things
I wanted to tell you.

I remember telling you those last days,
I loved you; Dave loved you.
How sad Dave was he didn’t tell you more.

I told you not to worry; I was taping all of the 24 episodes.
You wouldn’t miss any. Hard now, watching this season;
Remembering you; thinking of you; missing you.

I remember telling you not to worry about Sheila and the kids,
They'd want for nothing.
Should have known you’d leave them secure.
That’s so much who you were.

Did I remember to thank you for loving my daughter?
For taking care of her and my beautiful grandchildren?
I thanked God every day; I hoped I had remembered to thank you.

I remember telling you to “Save a seat for me at the table
Right next to you”; you responded by nodding your head.

...But the hardest to recall...
Did I remember to say goodbye?

I think not.
Goodbye is so final. I wouldn’t say goodbye.
Rather, I might have said, “See you later” or “so long”
Yes, I might have said, “See you later”, goodbye being so final.
The only truth I had left, believing I WOULD see you later.
But for now, I’m missing you.

Still awaken several times a night, trying to sort things out.
There is a difference though, one year later,
A line from a song going ‘round in my head;
“Even So, It Is Well With My Soul.” It fills me with peacefulness.
It’s one of Sheila’s favorites. God blessed me.
Maybe it is going to be okay.

Hard watching Sheila and the kids.
Little children praying for Jesus to “send my Dad back”.
A mother soothing her children
as best she can despite her deepest grief.
Big brother, big sister side-by-side, comforting, soothing;
Michael standing strong. Nicole and Sheila “kickin’ butt.”
Angry. Uncertain. So much grief, hearts so broken and pained.
How long?

Wendy and I walk along side them.
Wendy says, “It’s our calling”. She’s probably right.
We tell each other “how much better off you are” and “you’re in a better place, we’ll all be together one day”,
and all the usual things we believe.
But at the end of the day,
you’re still gone and we’re still missing you.

You were many things to many people, Mike.
Promises made to you have been kept,
Promises to care for your family.
Men and Women of God.
They take their place beside each of your children and Sheila.
Never tiring, always there.

Steven Fisch kept his promise alright!
He founded “CRUISERS FOR CHRIST” Motorcycle Ministry at Parkridge.
Your initials are in the cog of the wheel.
The initiation ride was to the Keys, “The Michael Ruggiano Memorial.”
The riders took their places from the starting point,
Your street, your house. Steven leading.
They rode in formation to the Keys. Heard it was a sight to behold!
Everyone pitched in and did their part.
Home filled with friends, table laden with food, pictures of you.
It was truly a befitting memorial!

We often say “if Mike could see this” or “if Mike could see that”.
I do believe God parts the clouds every now and again,
Giving you a glimpse of it all. Sure hope so.
I hope you caught a glimpse of that!

Harder still for those away, not with us, alone, sad and grieved.
Linda calls and asks, “how long?” I have nothing to answer.
Can’t hug or hold her; know how she feels though, Missing you.

I muse often now; Picture us all together.
What a sight to behold! See the kids with you.
Sheila and you holding hands.
And yes, we’ll be there somewhere.

Spending your one-year Memorial with your brothers and wives,
Cousins and some friends. I know it’s going to be hard.
Brothers are a reminder of you. A look, a glance, a laugh, a gesture.
We surely will see you. Still looking forward to it.
It’s as it should be.
Family and friends, finishing out this year together.
Telling funny stories about you, imitating you, remembering you, loving you; sharing you; missing you.

We’ll close out this year in style, our Memorial to you,
Entering into the next year with hope. After all, it's now Spring.
A time of new beginnings, new growth, new life.
We had a Season. Now we enter into another, a Season of Light.
Healing for all is our prayer. Though missing you.

But as for me for now, I’ll just say again
“See you later, Mike.
Remember, I’m expecting a seat at the table next to you.
Until we meet again, I’m missing you.”

April 1, 2007
Mike will remain in our hearts and minds forever. He left too soon.

Jay and Marlene Hodes