On September 26th the world tragically lost one of the great ones. Michael Jack Hawkins was taken from us way too early but will be remembered for many lifetimes to come. Heaven gained a true angel and warrior in Michael.
Michael was born June 16th, 1983, to Kenny and Joannie Hawkins and was the youngest of their three children. Michael attended Merrill Elementary and graduated from Lost River Jr/Sr High School in 2001. In school Michael could be found hanging out and getting into mischief with his best friends and cousins. His class was a very tight knit group of mostly ornery boys all of which stayed close even into adulthood. Michael played both football and baseball in school and especially enjoyed his agriculture classes with Coach Hill as the teacher. He was an avid sports fan and especially loved the Oregon Ducks, Las Vegas Raiders, and Oakland A’s.
Directly after high school Michael joined the United States Army and served meritoriously from 2001 to 2005. He was awarded two Army Achievement Medals and two Army Commendation Medals. Michael served one tour of duty in Iraq during the beginning of the war and was honorably discharged in 2005. Michael was very proud of his service and the sacrifices he made for his country. He was a true patriot.
However, Michael’s crowning achievement in his life was convincing Anna McVay to look his way. Theirs was a true love story written in the stars like a fairytale. They met when they were only 5 years old while attending CCD together at St. Augustine’s Catholic Church. Their friendship started there, but it blossomed into what would become a great love. By junior high, Michael knew she was the one for him, and by high school he had won her heart. Although they were very young, the two married June 21st, 2002, while Michael was on leave from the Army and Anna promptly moved to Germany where Michael was stationed.
While stationed in Germany Michael and Anna were able to travel and see many extraordinarily beautiful places. In 2004 his parents Kenny and Joannie took a holiday trip of a lifetime with the young married couple. They visited and toured England, Ireland, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, France, and Germany. Michael claimed they “ate, drank and danced” their way across Europe. He was often found eating foods others found to be suspect and paying the consequences later. Michael loved the food and the beer in Germany, especially during Oktoberfest celebrations.
When Michael was discharged in 2005 and was moving back stateside, his sister threw a giant surprise party for his parents using his grandparents 50th wedding anniversary as a decoy. Somehow, the whole Merrill and Malin communities were able to keep the surprise and there were about 150 people in attendance. The party was held at the Malin Community Hall and was a true celebration of the hero, Michael Jack Hawkins.
Michael and Anna moved to Arizona after the Army so that Michael could attend technical school at UTI. When he completed school, the couple moved back to Merrill, bought their first home and started a family. Michael and Anna had 3 beautiful children together. Their oldest daughter Eily Rose was born in 2007 and instantly had Michael wrapped around her tiny little finger. She was the absolute apple of his eye and true definition of a daddy’s girl with her beautiful smile and warm, loving heart. In 2011 Jack Douglas came kicking and screaming into the world. His whirlwind birth gave Michael’s heart a charge and kickstarted the relationship with his one true best friend and road-dog. And then, just when he thought his life couldn’t get any better, in 2021 Evan Michael was born. Michael was over the moon happy and bought every single baby gadget on the market. Michael was the ultimate family man. He, Anna and the kids did everything together. Michael and Anna called each other no fewer than 30 times a day even when they were annoyed with each other because the two had a beautiful understanding of each other, they were the definition of soulmates.
Michael worked for several local companies including Peterson, Noonan Farms, and Pape but decided to become self-employed so that he could spend more time with his wife and kids. He followed Anna into the real estate business and worked alongside her at Coldwell Banker. Along the way, Michael and Anna invested in several rental properties and as a family they would renovate and remodel the properties. He would take his kids to the properties and teach them real life skills. Most importantly, he spent day in and day out instilling values, ethics, and the importance of a hard day’s work. When the workday was over, they would go and get “gas candy” and eat tacos for dinner. Over the last 18 months while the kids were unable to attend school Michael took on the everyday school supervision tasks and when they weren’t in school, he found other projects to do with them. He and the kids built a chicken coop, rebuilt car engines and then got involved in quad racing. As a family they would travel the circuit so Jack and Eily could race with their dad as their pit boss.
Michael lived a very full and fun-filled 38 years amassing memories and touching the lives of everyone he met. He was able to do and see things most only dream about. He was jovial and funny, kind and generous, sentimental and loving, and possessed a heart of solid gold. Michael was a giant teddy bear under his tough exterior and if you were lucky enough to call him family or friend you know that he would give you the shirt off his back and then buy you a whole new wardrobe for good measure. Michael was the very best son, brother, husband, father, and uncle.
Michael is survived by his loving wife of 19 years Anna and their three kids Eily, Jack, and Evan, and their dog Max. He is also survived by his father and mother Kenny and Joannie Hawkins, his sister Melissa Hawkins and nephew Quentin, and his brother Ronnie Hawkins, wife Breanda and niece Kaylee, his in-laws Michael and Suzan McVay, Dean and Mandy Gable nieces and nephews Grant, Violet, Siena, and Simon, John and Mirranda McVay niece and nephew Adeline and Henry, Grandmother Joan Taylor, Grandparents Ron and Joan Hawkins, Grandparents Ron and Barb McVay and numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins. He leaves behind some very, very special and dear friends, way too many to list, but they know who they are. He was preceded in death by his Grandfather Fred Taylor.
Michael’s final resting place will be at Mt. Calvary Catholic Cemetery in the Army branch of the military memorial. Currently, to keep everyone safe and healthy, the family is having a private burial and service for immediate family. But later when it is safe to do so, a huge celebration of life and memorial will be held. In the meantime, the family would like to extend their humblest thanks for all the love and support the community has shown. Private family services will be held at a later date.
Michael, we “goo” you.
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