Robert Michael "Mike" Roberts
1942 ~ 2016
Robert Michael "Mike" Roberts died February 12, 2016 at his home in Boise.
Mike was born October 11, 1942 in Pocatello, ID. to Horace Roberts and Helen Morrison Roberts. His father was a rancher, miner, prospector, and teamster who lived most of his life in Lemhi County. Mike's mother Helen, was a stay at home mother of many talents. She was a seamstress, great cook, kept house and raised two children. Mike was raised in Salmon, and was a graduate of Salmon High, class of '61. His young life was significantly impacted by a number of friends, among them Elmer Keith, Billy Lewis, Jim Egge, and Buck Santos; all gentlemen of an old school who believed in honesty, integrity, and responsibility.
After graduating high school, Mike attended the University of Idaho in Moscow. In 1964, he decided to go to Alaska, beginning his training for a career in law enforcement. He worked as a Deputy Game Warden for the Alaska Fish and Game Department. In the fall of 1965, Mike returned to Salmon Idaho where he worked a number of jobs, including butchering, ranching, bartending, and as a powder monkey hauling dynamite in and around the Grand Canyon. In 1968 Mike became a Patrolman for the City of Salmon Police Department. He worked in that capacity until he left to become a Patrolman for the Ada County Sheriff's Department in December 1971. He worked for three succeeding Sheriffs for a total of seventeen years. During that time Mike became a Polygraph Examiner, was a Detective, Scuba Diver, and Deputy Coroner. He rose to the rank of Captain and graduated the FBI National Academy 120th session. In 1987, Mike went to work for the Ada County Commissioners, where he worked an additional seventeen years as Director of Risk Management, Director of Welfare, Director of Mental Health, and finally as Director of EMS. He retired from Ada County in August, 2004.
Mike was married in 1975 and from that union, two children were born; James Donald Roberts in 1979; and Cassie Nicole Roberts, born 1982. He was later divorced.
After his retirement, Mike had to learn how to play. Along with several old cop friends he began riding ATV's and would go riding at the drop of a hat. He was a great story teller and could spin a yarn of his youth from when he was a Deputy Sheriff, of his grand kids, or any of his many adventures to anyone that would listen. He had a story for everything. He was a man dedicated to his work and took great pride in a job well done. He believed in what he did. He had a great sense of humor, and found joy in laughing at the situations and people he came into contact with, but almost all of his favorite stories involved laughing at himself. He will be sorely missed by those who knew him.
Mike is survived by a sister, Rose Lewis of Spokane, WA.; son J.D; daughter Cassie and five grandchildren. His grandchildren were his pride and joy. He was a man who deeply loved his family and friends.
A memorial service will be held on Monday, February 22, 2016 at 3:00 pm at Summers Funeral Home, Ustick Chapel in Meridian, ID.
Memories and condolences may be shared with the family on Mike's memorial webpage at www.summersfuneral.com
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Published by Idaho Statesman on Feb. 17, 2016.