Colchester, VT - Michael James “Mike” Harper, age 58, passed away at his home with his family at his side on December 29th, 2020. Mike was born in Boston, Massachusetts on April 15th, 1962. He was the youngest son of the late Francis C. Harper and Mary Treddin Harper.
Michael graduated from Needham High School in 1980, after playing for their varsity football team. He graduated from RETS Institute for Training on repairing radios, electronics, and televisions in 1982. Mike moved to Vermont in 1989 and fell in love with the Green Mountains and Lake Champlain, although he remained an avid fan of all Boston sports teams. Over the 40 years of his career, Mike traveled the world working as a Field Service Engineer for Savin, Nikon, Novellus, IBM, SÜSS MicroTec, and Polhemus. Some of Mike’s favorite travels were to Malaysia, France, and Ireland. He loved traveling and learning about the people and history of where he was visiting.
When asked how he would describe himself he said: “I like to laugh. I like water.” He did these things as often as he could, as he was born with a sharp wit and a love to verbally joust with friends, he made others laugh a lot. It made perfect sense therefore that he loved the Three Stooges and would watch their shows over and over again as if it was the first time. Mike also loved fishing, and teaching his children how to fish. He could often be found with a friend or family member in a boat, dropping a line.
Recreation was a passion for Mike, whether it was bowling with his buddies, playing games with his children, or camping with friends and family. He loved the outdoors and recently enjoyed kayaking and biking. It wasn’t all about people for Mike, he also loved his dogs, and they adored him.
There were many memories of people that he didn’t know who would come up to him to share their stories, their troubles, or their worries. Though Mike never understood this and often laughed about it, those that love him know it had a lot to do with his big heart and approachable, kind nature.
Mike is survived by his wife Lisa Jane Maynes; his daughter Katherine Anne Polo and her husband Christopher James Polo; his daughter Lauren Stella Harper and her partner Nathanael Jack Kuzio; and his son Liam Michael Harper. Additionally he leaves his step children Meghan Elizabeth Bushey and Patrick David Bushey. He adored and was adored by Meghan’s two young children. Mike is predeceased by his father Francis C. Harper and mother Mary Treddin Harper. Mike is survived by his brothers Francis (Frankie) Harper and his wife Sue Bartlett Harper, Timothy Harper and his wife Jacquelyn Hilburn Harper, and his sister Mary Helen Harper. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews including Nick Harper and Matthew Harper, and cousins including Helen Treddin Pudelko; and his longtime close friends Timmy and Ann Wheelock.
Mike’s family would like to extend a special thanks to Bayada hospice, and particularly their nurse, Sunny.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions and Mike’s wishes there will be a private celebration of life held and at the convenience of the family. Memorial contributions in Michael’s memory may be made to the Vermont Let’s Go Fishing Program to the attention of Jan Finn and payable to Vermont Fish and Wildlife, 1 National Life Drive, Davis 2, Montpelier, VT 05621. Please add “LGF” in the check memo space so it is allocated to that program that teaches children how to fish, something Mike loved to do.
The family also invites you to share your memories and condolences by visiting www.awrfh.com.