Michael W. Tersigne

Birth Date: 
Wednesday, September 5, 1956
Date of Passing: 
Thursday, December 16, 2021

Michael W. Tersigne was born September 5, 1956, in Wooster, Ohio and received his wings on December 16, 2021, in Houston, Texas after a valiant battle against metastatic bladder cancer. Mike graduated from Wooster High School in 1975 and attended and worked many years at the College of Wooster where he met lifelong friends. After moving to Houston in 1978 Mike prayed to God to meet his soulmate and soon after met the love of his life; Sonia in 1979. It was a love story that blossomed for 42 years.

Mike had a quick sense of humor and enjoyed entertaining friends and family. He was sharp witted, had an amazing photographic memory, a wonderful sense of style and charisma and was deeply spiritual. Mike genuinely enjoyed over three decades of a real estate career with his wife, Sonia who will continue their legacy at Greenwood King Properties in Houston, Texas. His interest in real estate began at an early age. He loved walking through homes under construction and driving through neighborhoods studying all facets of construction, design, and architecture. In addition to helping clients Mike also enjoyed buying and selling homes in many areas of Houston, Galveston, Texas and Wooster, Ohio. His last home was acquired in his hometown of Wooster, Ohio sight unseen and was to be a retirement home to be shared with family & friends. He was proud to be able to restore the home just months before diagnosis and the pandemic. Sadly, the illness and the pandemic made it challenging to travel but he was able to spend time there this year. Fun times were spent in Galveston, Texas at Mardi Gras with Knights of Momus, The Galveston Artillery Club, and long beach runs and walks as well as time with family and grandchildren. He loved going for daily runs or walks in Memorial Park in Houston, Texas and in Oak Hill Park in Wooster as well as driving through Amish country in Ohio.

Mike is survived by his adoring wife, Sonia, stepfather Robert Byers, sister Louise Manfredi, stepson Chris O’Docharty and beloved grandchildren Dylan Michele and John Wheeler, sister-in-law Susana O’Docharty (Lynda), brothers-in-law Dennis O’Docharty, John O’Docharty, and Charles O’Docharty (David) as well as nieces Jessa, Lauren, and Jazmin. He was predeceased by his mother Rose Tersigne Byers, father William C. Lawson, sister Dianne Lawson Strassner, and daughter-in-law Lisa O’Docharty. He is also survived by many cousins. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Heartfelt appreciation to sisters-in-law Susana O’Docharty and Lynda Kornbleet. Special thanks to Kathy & Tony Poling, Texas Home Health Palliative Care and Seasons Hospice, nurse Kendra Dailey and aid Adriana for their loving care and support, Dr. Nancy E. Hughes and all the healthcare providers at Baylor Chi St. Luke’s Hospital.

A rosary will be held at McIntire, Bradham & Sleek Funeral Home 216 E. Larwill St. Wooster, Ohio, followed by a short committal service at St. Mary’s Cemetery, Madison Ave. Wooster, Ohio on Thursday,  December 30, 2021, at 1:00 PM, Father Richard J. Samide officiating. Due to the Covid pandemic masks are required.

Pallbearers: James Melvin, Ron Fry, Thomas Farro, Tony Poling, Rick Jones, Dave Harper and Ted Brown

Honorary pallbearers:  Tom Zarlengo, Steve Fry, Stu Ludlow, Justine Simoni, Bertha Fountain, Daniel Demers, Don Sanberg, Tim Berkstresser, and Geoff Smucker (deceased)

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception, P.O. Box 109, Wooster, Ohio 44691, or a charity of your choice.

Online condolences may be left for the family at www.mcintirebradhamsleek.com

Memorial Contributions: 

St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception, P.O. Box 109, Wooster, Ohio 44691, or a charity of your choice.

Visitation: 

No calling hours.

Service: 

A rosary will be held at McIntire, Bradham & Sleek Funeral Home 216 E. Larwill St. Wooster, Ohio, followed by a short committal service at St. Mary’s Cemetery, Madison Ave. Wooster, Ohio on Thursday,  December 30, 2021, at 1:00 PM, Father Richard J. Samide officiating. Due to the Covid pandemic masks are required.

Condolences

Sonia, I am so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to you. I will always cherish the fun times I've had with both you and Mike. His magnetism and the way he made his friends feel so special will never ever be forgotten. I'm so glad we're friends! Please know that I am here for you and love you very much.

My dearest Mike. I love you with all my heart. You were the one that always encouraged me and watched my back. I will forever miss you on earth until we meet again. Love always, Sonia

Dear Sonia, becoming reacquainted with my childhood friend and meeting you has been one of God’s blessings in my life! Thank you for loving and caring for Mike for the last 42 years. Your shared love was surely his greatest accomplishment…..may he now Rest In Peace.

Mike I'll forever miss you, my cousin,my big brother, my best friend ❤

You described Mikes personality so perfectly in the obituary. I known both of you since I first started my real estate career over 30 years ago. He did have a wicket cense of humor and great design instinct. I will be there for you and lift you up whenever you need it. Thinking of you and your family during this sad time.
Respectfully,
Karin Tennant

I remember clearly how I met Michael. It was on a beautiful sunny autumn day in October of 1974. I was 18, a freshman at Wooster, standing with my thumb out, (yes. . . hitch hiking was still a thing back then) on route 83 under trees with leaves of gold and red. I was on my last leg to get back to my dorm after spending the weekend back home in Cleveland.

I was thrilled to see a red Buick Skylark pull over. “Jump in,” yelled the driver to be heard over a radio blaring rock and roll. There was marijuana joint burning in the car ashtray. I thought to myself this is going to be an interesting ride. I couldn’t help grinning as we headed down the highway with him singing along to “Maggie May” with Rod Stewart. He paused to introduce himself as Michael. When he dropped me off at my dorm I asked sarcastically if he had a day job. With a smirk he said he worked at the Wooster College cafeteria but added that there was a big party later that night and I should go to it. “Why not?” I thought.

Later I headed over to it with some friends. As I was standing in this big old house with tons of partiers, Michael walked up. I said, “Hey guys, meet my new friend, Rod Stewart.” They all laughed but it was his smile - it lit up the room. He then introduced me to a young lady who was to become my girlfriend. We all became great friends. The intensity of living life when you feel like you’re going to live forever was something we shared. Michael and I were great road partners going to concerts, parties and other social events on and off campus. I stayed at Wooster until the end of my freshman year. When I transferred to Kent State followed by Ohio State, Michael used those Buick Skylark wheels of his and visited me bringing along other friends. Some of the best times in my life were with Michael during those college years.

I eventually moved across the country and Michael went to Texas. We lost touch for about 39 years. In the summer of 2017, I received a call at my parent’s home back in Cleveland – actually Westlake, Ohio. It was Michael. The telephone call was like a dream. He told me people now called him Mike, but our conversation picked up like we hadn’t seen each other in about a week. He had traveled from where he lived in Houston to Wooster so I drove down to see him. We went out to eat and talked for hours. The two of us laughing, laughing and laughing. It was remarkable. It was if we were testing each other to see who could re-tell the most shared outrageous story.

In 2019, I was distressed to get a call from Mike in which he revealed his cancer diagnosis. This hit home to both of us since the young lady he introduced to me back at that initial college party in 1974 had passed away too soon, some years ago, also from cancer. For Mike and I during the last two years, our telephone conversations have been filled with hope but with dashes of reality, nothing new to anyone who has been forced down the road of fighting cancer that keeps spreading.

After the strict Covid shutdown restrictions had been partially lifted I had the good fortune to meet Mike again along with his lovely wife Sonia in Wooster last May. He was still undergoing different types of medical treatment the doctors could think of, hoping for a miracle. Together with Sonia, they purchased a beautiful house on a hill in Wooster. Back when I met him in 1974, he called a trailer home. I looked around their beautiful Ohio home, admiring all the work they had put into its remodel. I was in awe of the energy he had put into their new house. That visit was the last time I saw my friend in person. We stayed in touch while they went back to Houston and he underwent more treatments and interventions but the battle was taking a huge toll on him.

Then on December 16, just a short time ago, I received the call from Sonia that the battle was over and Mike had gone. And it was like all those times we had together were drained out of me because he was not going to be there to remember them with me. There was nobody else like him.

They say as you get older you are lucky if you have one really good friend. Even though thirty-nine years had gone by, when he got back in touch with me, I knew Mike was a unique friend I could forever trust. I was fortunate and blessed to have known him well through the years of 1974 to 1978. He was one of my best friends. When we reconnected later in life it certified those times of living life to the fullest. Our recalling of the stories authenticated the joy we shared in music, escapades and laughter. Something I didn’t know I was missing. Something I miss now.

I’m writing my thoughts about Mike today and it’s Christmas. It is with the heaviness of loss, yet with gratitude that he is free of pain and limitations and surrounded by love. It will be my honor to be a pallbearer for my friend’s service this Thursday December 30th to carry him to his final resting place where he will be buried next to his mother at the Wooster cemetery.

For Christmas, I’ll try to reconnect in my memory of us driving down the road back in the 1970’s in his red Buick Skylark on that warm autumn afternoon, all the windows down, the wind hitting us in the face and our youthful long hair blowing in the wind. Let Maggie May play loud and clear to let all the angels know Mike is on his way to join them with his big bright smile.

Dear Sonia,

I am so sorry for your loss. I pray you have all the strength and love surrounding you and your loved ones to go through this trying time. What a wonderful love story you have to cherish. 42 years is so special to have with the one you love, big hugs and love to you and all your family, Love Den

I'm so sorry, Sonia. We lost a beautiful soul here on earth. Mike will live on in your heart and memories. Hang in there, Sweetie.

I have known Mike all my life. My mom and his mom were best friends, both working at Rubbermaid. We were born 4 months apart. During the summer while our mom’s were at work, Mike would come over ( we only lived a block apart) Mike, my sister and I would play for hours. I will always cherish those times. He always called my mom Aunt Frances even though we weren’t related by blood. Every summer Rubbermaid had their family picnic at Meyers Lake. Mike and his mom would go with us. I am so glad that Mike was a part of my life RIP my friend

Dear Sonia,

Please know you are in my thoughts and prayers at this very sad time.

With deepest sympathy ,
Janice

My heart breaks for you my prima. Even though Mike is in a better place, I know you want him here with you. You have the love and support of so many people, I hope that helps sustain you. Love you so much and praying for your peace.

We will always remember Mike’s smile and kind heart. He was a generous man who deeply loved his friends and family. Sonia, praying for you as you celebrate Mike’s life. He will be deeply missed by many! Sending you all of our love!

I was so shocked to hear of Mike's passing. Lost track of Mike after leaving Wooster. He use to come over to my house when we were kids. He was such a kind and giving friend. Many fond memories! May he rest in peace!

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