Michael Richard "Mike" Bird
1942 - 2021
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Michael "Mike" Richard Bird

Muncie - Michael "Mike" Richard Bird, 79, of Muncie, passed away with his family by his side at Parker Health and Rehab on Friday, May 7, 2021. He was born at home on Thursday, April 2, 1942, in Muncie, Indiana, the son of the late Edward and Lela (Ruede) Bird. He married Diane Gibson on May 20, 1965, and they shared fifty-five years together. He was a loving husband, father, and grandpa. He enjoyed gatherings with his family and friends.

A lifelong resident of Muncie, Mike attended Muncie Central High School before joining the U.S. Navy, where he served on the USS Intrepid from 1962-1965, and was in the Naval Reserves until his discharge in 1968. He worked for Vectren (formerly Indiana Gas) for thirty-nine years before retiring.

Mike was a pitcher for several fast-pitch softball teams over his twenty-five years of playing. A few of the teams he played on were the U.S. Engineering and Mid-West Towel of Muncie, Marion Plymouth Club, and the Shelbyville Sting. During his years of playing, he played against the King and his Court, and Team USA. He was inducted into the Delaware County Hall of Fame for Softball in 1987, and into the Indiana State Hall of Fame for softball in 1990.

He was also an avid bowler, where he played on several teams throughout the years as well as participating in local, state and national tournaments. He was a certified youth coach with the YABA and was inducted into the USBC in 2010. Mike also enjoyed playing golf and was a member of Maplewood Golf Course, as well as a member of the American Legion Post 19. He enjoyed playing cards whether it was with family, friends, or poker buddies.

Mike is survived by his wife, Diane; his daughters, Dena (Joe) Collins and Sharon (Jack) Collins; grandchildren, Andrew Strouse, Jacob Collins, Johnathan Collins, Nathan (Brittany) Bird, Jared Collins, and Jeweliann Collins; a step great-granddaughter, Raylynn; a brother, Gary Bird; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; father-in-law and mother-in-law, B. Howard and Virginia Gibson; his son, Scott Bird; five brothers, Ed, Tony, Fred, Ray, and Danny Bird; five sisters, Rosella Cartwright, Alice LaChat, Betty Jennings, Ann Peters, and Judith Bird.

Friends and family may call Thursday, May 13, 2021, from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Elm Ridge Funeral Home, 4600 West Kilgore Avenue, Muncie, Indiana 47304.

Services will be held Friday, May 14, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. at Elm Ridge Funeral Home. Pastor Rusty Clements will officiate. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, masks are required as well as social distancing.

Memorial contributions may be given to Muncie A.R.F., 1209 West Riggin Road, Muncie, Indiana 47303, OR to the donor's choice.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.elmridgefuneralhome.com for the family.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The Star Press from May 10 to May 12, 2021.
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