Michael Joseph Stanczak of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin passed away on Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at the age of 80 from injuries sustained from a severe bicycle accident.
Mike, or “Mickey” to his siblings, was born in North Chicago, Illinois on March 11, 1941 to the late Joseph “Curly” and Viola Stanczak. One of 5 siblings and the only boy, Mike learned his hard work ethic at an early age holding many jobs throughout his life, starting as a paper boy in which he earned enough to buy his first bicycle. From then on, his love of bike riding never ended.
He had a love of different cultures, which brought him to major in Spanish at Loras College and Wichita State for his master’s degree. His first job was as a Spanish teacher at Zion Benton High School, where he met his soon-to-be wife, Patricia Hayes, a Special Education teacher. They married on June 18, 1966. With his wife and his love of Spanish, they honeymooned in Mexico and would visit there many times throughout their life together.
Mike loved God and demonstrated this through his actions – he loved to make people laugh and feel good. He developed his teasing sense of humor from his mom, which his sisters did not always appreciate. Much to his family’s chagrin at times, he would lose sight of time as he would make conversation with virtually anyone. Mike loved everyone and would do anything for anyone, which was also evident though his volunteer work at KAFASI, church activities, mission trips to the Dominican Republic, lifetime blood donator, and many other activities. His love of gardening was apparent to all by his immaculate yard. His zest for life was contagious to all those around him.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Patricia; children, Steve (Alma), Bill (Rhonda), and Michelle (Steve) Stevens; sisters, Kathy (Jim) Merlock, Bonnie (Tom) Sowden, Judy (Pete) Markarian, and Joanne Hays; seven grandchildren; and numerous nephews and nieces.
Mike was preceded in death by his parents and brothers-in-law, Bob Hays and John Merlock.
Visitation will be held on Friday, September 17, 2021, at Proko Funeral Home from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. Additional visitation will be held on Saturday, September 18, 2021, at St. Anne Catholic Church located at 9091 Prairie Ridge Blvd, Pleasant Prairie, WI from 10:30 a.m. until the time of Mass at 11:30. In lieu of flowers, memorials appreciated to the Catholic Relief Services at www.support.crs.org or St. Anne Catholic Church at https://saint-anne.org/donate/.