July 8, 1959 – February 14, 2022
After a courageous several years battle with lymphoma, Mike English passed away with his loved ones at his side. To say his was a life of adventure and optimism is an understatement. He was born the oldest of three boys in Everett, WA to Verne and Jayleen English. As a fourth-generation resident of Snohomish, his formative years were a whirlwind of activity with endless hot summer nights spent running as a pack with the neighborhood kids, picking raspberries, camping trips to the Oregon and Washington coasts, remote parts of Canada and beyond. Prior to car seats and burdensome parental oversight, the three boys were thrown into the back of a pick-up truck with a second-generation mattress, comic books and a small dog for family vacations. It was idyllic times with family, friends and neighbors and a revolving door for all. He and his friends spent weekends tearing up the neighborhood on motorbikes and jeeps. He was a pretty good athlete and student but both took a back seat to social life. His true calling was hard work, friends, hunting and fishing. He met our friend Joe Kies through the neighborhood kids, and his plumbing career for life was determined.
He was intelligent and well-read. He was gruff but sensitive, caring and sometimes an enigma to many. He made lasting lifelong friends where ever he landed. Never one to miss a get-together, it was many late-night parties with friends, snowmobiling until the morning at the cabin, four am wakeup call for king salmon season, or golfing with friends at the Sekiu country club.
This style followed him throughout his life. He was driven, courageous in work and life, loyal to family and friends and those willing to stick with him. It wasn’t always easy. You’d never want to lose a salmon when Mike was captain of the boat. Principled and sometimes a bit demanding, he never bought anything from Starbucks after Schultz sold the Sonics in 2007, and scorned those who did.
His plumbing jobs with brother Joe took him to California, Texas, Tennessee, Louisiana and beyond. He’d take chances in life but always landed on his feet. On a Hawaiian vacation, he got caught in a riptide and swept out to sea but fought his way back to shore. He was tough. He returned to Snohomish after time in other states, but the town was getting too crowded with ‘Subaru driving yuppies and out of staters’.
In the mid-eighties he bought a boat and started fishing the waters of Puget Sound. He made a weekend trip to Sekiu and found his true home by the sea. He bought a house, more land, fished year-round, hunted, and made life-long friends again. He created a very successful Commercial Plumbing and Mechanical company. Sekiu was slow-paced- dictated by the seasons, kind of how Snohomish used to be.
Never one to embrace technology, he still had a flip phone and made do with what he had. But he had everything and more. Although not being religious, he kept a Bible on the bookshelf. When cancer struck, he was just hitting his stride. Life isn’t always fair.
He didn’t want to quit- there were too many good times ahead. He lived a full life for almost 63 years. His daughter Jess and granddaughter Chloe came from Texas to take care of him for the last six months. Jess, her daughter and husband and our parents Verne and Jayleen were by his side when he died.
He was a lifelong UW Huskie Football fan and had season tickets for several years. Though gravely ill, he flew to Las Vegas for the last Husky Bowl Game in December 2019 with his Dad Verne, Friends Chris and Val Mohr.
He is survived by daughter Jessica (Phenone) their daughter Chloe), his parents Verne and Jayleen, brother Joe (Kim) and their boys Daryn (Carissa) and sons Kingsley and Ronan, and Jake, his brother Dave (Sara) and their kids Emma and Isaac, his Auntie Net and Uncle Jerry, cousins and numerous friends. He also leaves behind his Sekiu family Eddie, Chris, Rick, Tex, Karen, and many more.
He was predeceased by nephew Dylan, Uncles Dan Hunt and Ron English, his mentor and friend Joe Kies, his Sekiu friends Spider and Lisa Wright, Brad Mclean and both sets of grandparents. Never one to want a big party in his honor, a memorial celebration is planned for May 21, 2022, at 1 pm at the Clallam Inn in Clallam Bay, WA.