Mike and Brian – 1995
Mike’s Senior Yearbook Will Always Remember – 1997
I spent last night going through old yearbooks and photos, thinking about Mike, Wayne Central and life in the 90′s! The biggest memory I have of Mike, is the same one he mentioned in his Senior Yearbook “Will Always Remember” section…..”going out with HY for a whole 3 weeks.” I also found every picture in my yearbook that year with a heart around Mike’s face. Even though our “teen love” may have been short-lived, he remained a good friend and it’s been nice to read the stories of more recent years and learn he hadn’t changed from the sweet, funny, and kind guy I knew in high school. My heart and thoughts are with the Giunta family and all the other friends who were lucky enough to have a friendship with Mike along the way. He will be missed, but if his yearbook 2nd life plan comes true he’s a ski bum and enjoying the slopes.
I had the privilege of watching Mike grow up with my nephew…from a fun loving little kid, through the teen and college years and into adulthood with a career that I understand he did with excellence and compassion and a life filled with so many friends and people who loved him.
When I used to take my daughter to Hanks to get ice cream Mike would always take some time to come out and visit with us. The last time I saw Mike was in September at a picnic at my sister’s house. We had such a great conversation and he gave me some really useful advice. My sister told me that he had recently texted her and wanted her to let me know if I ever needed to talk I could text or email him anytime. Mike always had a smile and made time for people because he truly cared for everyone in his life and he made sure that was known.
I have been thinking about Mike so much this past week and I am so saddened by his loss. For every life Mike touched I know he left memories that will bring happiness and a smile. His kindness and gentleness will never be forgotten. I feel blessed to have known him.
Our family is heartbroken as we hear of Mike’s sudden passing. You are all in our thoughts and prayers. May God comfort you with His great love and the love of family and friends.
My son Jack was in the car with me when Harvey called me on the cell and told me the horrendous news. When I told Jack what happened he cried and said he will miss Mike. The three of us had gone skiing together earlier this winter and Jack always talked about what a great guy Mike was and “an awesome skiier too”. I too will forever miss Mike.
We were work partners for 8 years on that little PET trailer. We could almost predict each other’s moves. I’ve worked in the health care field for a very long time and with many many people and I can honestly say that nobody, not anyone ever showed as much compassion and caring towards the patients as did Mike.
It’s been almost a week now and everyday I’m in constant disbelief trying to come to terms with this. Everyday at the different hospitals that we go to people are hearing about what happened. The expression of sadness and deep sorrow from so many people is overwhelming. Mike’s reach was far, he touched so many and was loved and admired by so many. I feel blessed just to have known him.
Mr. & Mrs. Giunta and family, I realize that there are no adequate words that can possibly bring comfort to you at this time. The pain and sorrow you feel is just incomprehensible. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you. Mike will be greatly missed.
Love Jon Newman and my family, Kristina, Jack and Sydney….
When we bought Hanks Ice Cream in 1995, Mike came with it! He was a tenured employee at the young age of 17! He actually trained us because he was so well trained by Hank himself! I will always remember him in the pink zuba hat which all were required to wear! His passion was decorating cakes, and he was so good at it! He took some razzing but he didn’t care, he knew what he enjoyed. We’ve kept in touch over the years trough FB, I had found his old original employee paper work a few months back and had quite a laugh about the note from his mom giving him permission to work on school nites bc his school grades were very good. I mailed it all to him to also have a laugh! Kathy and Tom and Ryan all your memories of a great son & brother will hopefully help you to get thru this difficult time. All our love!