Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Michael Edward Needham, 58

| May 1, 2024 12:00 AM

Michael Edward Needham
January 28, 1966 - March 9, 2024

Michael Edward Needham left this world too soon on March 9, 2024. He passed away at home after suffering a cardiac event.

While his heart would finally give out, all who knew Mike would tell you it was that same heart which made him the kind, caring, gentle and generous soul we will all profoundly miss. He was always putting others before himself. His loved ones already miss his off-beat humor and terrible dancing.

An avid and accomplished home chef and baker, food was his love language. His jerk chicken and cheesecake recipes will become cherished reminders of him. He pursued his culinary creativity as a career when he joined the kitchen staff at Clark Fork Valley Hospital. Through hard work and study for additional certifications, he became nutritional services manager and cared for the hospital’s staff, patients, and their families through his cooking.

Mike was a walking encyclopedia of 1960-1990 rock music history, teaching everyone around (those who wanted to listen or not) the origins of each song or album he played. Later in his life, he rekindled a passion for riding his motorcycle and the freedom he felt with the wind in his face.

He was born on Naval Station Bremerton in Washington state to Joe and Juanita Needham, the middle of their five children. Growing up, Mike could usually be found causing trouble with his brothers and lifelong best friend Scott. Occasionally, the boys would let little sister Janice tag along. He attended Davis High School in Yakima, Washington and graduated in 1984. He later attended Perry Technical Institute and graduated with a degree in telecommunications.

He married his second wife Julie in 1998, in turn becoming a doting and devoted father to Jasmine, Jessica and Eddie. He would later move with his family to Plains, Montana.

In 2015, he began dating the woman with whom he’d spend the rest of his life. Mike and Anna were married in 2019. The two were seldom parted and loved to be cozy at home with their numerous rescued pets. Their time together was too short, but their love for each other burned brighter than most.

He is survived by his wife Anna-Liza Bayhon Needham; his three children Eddie Stugelmayer of Plains, Montana, Jessica Stugelmayer (Phil Carlstedt) of Bellingham, Washington, and Jasmine Sayler (Eli) of Missoula, Montana; his three grandchildren Alexis, Christian and Ava; his parents William (Joe) and Juanita Needham of Yakima, Washington; and his four siblings Joseph Needham, Billy Needham, Janice Stubner (Ray), and John Needham of Yakima, Washington.

Two memorials will be held in the states Michael called home. The first will be in Yakima, Washington on May 4 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Eagle Lanes. The second celebration of life will be hosted June 15 from noon to 4 p.m. at Fred Young Park in Plains, Montana. All are welcome. Additional event details can be found on Facebook.

A GoFundMe “In Memory of Mike Needham” has been set up for donations to help with medical bills and expenses during this time of unexpected grief and loss.

    Michael Edward Needham