0
Tonto

Condolences - Michael Bruce Ramon

Recommended Posts

Mike and I were good friends and roommates back in Eugene, and went through our student training together. The last time I saw him was almost two years ago, and the time previous to that we jumped together at Orange. He was an amazing person and a true friend.

I am so glad to have found this post. I have been travelling in Africa for the last three months and got the news of Mike's death via email the day after it happened. It's been really hard to deal with this from a million miles away, and only today did I finally have a chance to try and find out more. Thanks to everyone for sharing their memories of Mike, and especially for posting these pictures. It really helps.

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This is my attempt at a website in memory of Mike. I wanted everyone to have access to the photos I printed for the memorial service. This is the best way I could think to do it. The photos are large so they can be printed, but they may be slow to download. Please let me know if you have any questions or want me to add any photos to the site. Thanks!

www.timesfly.com/michael

Blue Skies,
Megan/Burrowing Betty

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

This is my attempt at a website in memory of Mike. I wanted everyone to have access to the photos I printed for the memorial service. This is the best way I could think to do it. The photos are large so they can be printed, but they may be slow to download. Please let me know if you have any questions or want me to add any photos to the site. Thanks!

www.timesfly.com/michael

Blue Skies,
Megan/Burrowing Betty



great job!!! i did not know mike at all - but from what i can tell you seemed to capture what everyone did say that did know him
"life does throw curveballs sometimes but it doesn't mean we shouldn't still swing for the homerun" ~ me

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Megan!

Thanks so much for this. It was heartbreaking not to be able to attend the service; to show my respect and love to Mike and to be there for Kim and John and the rest of Mike's family.

I'm also glad to know that you're out there. (I had guessed your were probably the Megan that was posting, but didn't want to assume anything.) It's been so nice hearing from the West Coast contingent. Hi to Miles and Vanessa too.

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
HI Timmy! Thanks for all the kind words about Mike. You are a very dear friend to him and a lot of his memories came from the Eugene days (you all know who you are).

Michael's work posted a tribute to him on their site and also a way for people to make donations in Mike's name, if that is of interest. They have more work related pics and quotes from clients. He was obviously thought of very highly. You can check it out here: http://www.encompassdb.com/mike/

Hope the rest of your trip goes well, and we look forward to catching up with you when you return.

Also, for anyone interested... final ceremonies will be in Eugene next August. We will keep you posted about details.

Thanks to everyone for all the kind words about Mike!
-Kim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On September 17th we flew a missing man dive over Skydive Orange for Mike. I have compiled many pictures that people have produced of Mike along with the footage from that jump into a memorial video for him. The video can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7c9Vhj2CYU

Video contributions were made by Eric Babcock, Dan Oden, Brandon Coates, and myself, Liz Bowman.

I think about Mike every day and what a major impact he made on my life. I will always miss him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Kim,

If there is anything at all that you need help with don't hesitate to call me...location, aircraft, phone numbers of DZO's, pilots or jumpers, anything at all.

All my love~Vanessa

Hi Tim, welcome back from your travels....
Smile & Laugh everyday, if you're not, change something..Life is now...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There have been too many days to count that that day replays itself in my head and in my heart....hearing those dreaded words, I went limp and I dropped down into a ball on the gravel walkway, a sound never heard before by my own ears krept out of my mouth in a choking whisper. In the days before the funeral, I remained locked up in my house huddled up and rocking over a spread of pictures...memories of the best and happiest days I've ever spent, pictures of my friend, of our cirlce, of moments when our lives were intertwined and gloriously lived...

There are too many days to count that my heart is full of sarrow, too many sad days that I miss my friend.

So many days though, so many moments throughout any given day will trigger a memory of time spent with Mike. Whether I'm alone or in a crowd, I'll just smile and remember. Some times I'll tell a story, sometimes I'll keep it for myself.

I hate the days that sadness overtakes me...I hate that there is no rewind on real life. Being that I have no other choice, I live for the memories and keep him close thoughout my daily routines.

He was so funny about always having to have q-tips, it was okay to run out of toilet paper or toothpaste he could just use paper towels and mouthwash to suffice, but heaven forbid he walk out that door with wet ears!
And than when I get in my car and if there is stuff scattered about the seats, I'll remember how when you'd get into his he'd say just as long as you look out the front window, the car appears clean. Just don't look at the floor board or in the back seat, keep your eyes looking out the window!
There would be days that I'd come home from work wearing the painters coveralls and he'd grab onto the back side of the shoulder straps, pick me up a foot or so off the floor put me down and do it over and over like a baby in one of those bouncey chairs and ask me how my day was and I'd just laugh and laugh...
We'd go out to eat, this one day he's telling this animated story with his hands to JoJo and myself, just talking away in typical Mike fashion, eventually we look down at his plate and his huge calzone is gone, our plates our still full.We were always like, how does he do that?! He never stopped talking and managed to eat the entire thing!
I remember getting him and Megan out of bed to go sit on the porch of the Broadway house to watch all the fall leaves on the street blowing around, thinking at the time how neat to have friends to share such a pretty evening with.
I remember taking notice one day of how big his coffee cup was and he says to me, "Vanessa, everything about me is big. Big hands, big feet, big nose, ears, evan my coffee cup. The only thing small about me is my butt!"

This one summer it seemed like all of us had taken a dinger of some sort, he had a cast on his arm, Mile's had one on his leg, JoJo and I were gimping around with sore ankles. He'd carry this golf ball around and when anybody asked he'd say he crashed a golf cart or some nonsense and than lift up the golf ball as evidence!
Than every week, he'd cut his cast off with the help of the boys and go in to get a new one put on ( I think that was his idea of getting his money's worth out of his insurance.) He'd drive the nurse crazy with a million questions of why's and what for's until finally she tells him. "Michael, I'm going to have to start talking to you like I talk to my six year old. With my hands on my hips and a big sigh, I'll look at you and say 'what now?'"

I hadn't talked with Mike for a handful of months prior to the accident, I was caught up with the move to San Diego and a new job, etc. For a couple of months every morning when I was on the freeway at four in the morning commuting to work, I'd think that I should call Mike. It'd be seven o'clock his time, I could probably catch him on his way to work. I never picked up the phone, I'd have some lame excuse like I was getting into traffic and needed to pay attention or I was too tired to talk. So I never called him.

I never called him and now I can never call him...I can never call him, aaaggghhhh.....why.why.why.why.why?

This is Mike's birthday weekend, he'd be 32. Mile's, JoJo, he and I were planning on a reunion, maybe this would have been the weekend, we'd have made a week of it. It'd be awesome.

I'm sad today, I miss Mike....

Mile's, JoJo and I sat atop a hill drinking wine watching the sunset one summer eve in Eugene. We talked of how life was full of phases and how friends come and go, of how none of us really had ever had true lasting friendships. We recognized how quick our bond was with us and also recognized that maybe by next summer we would have moved onto another chapter and not remained so tight. We toasted that day to the here and the now of our friendship. But we endured, life moved on, chapters ended and new ones started and we remained friends through the goods and the bads and the long distances. We made it, my three boys, my true friends.

I miss you buddy, it's not the same without you.....
Smile & Laugh everyday, if you're not, change something..Life is now...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Sweetie,

I know how you feel. So many times there are things that come up where I say to myself, "Mike would really appreciate that," "Mike would think this is hilarious," or "Wow, Mike would love to be here for this moment." I think about giving him a call, but I can't now. I'm certainly happy I had a chance to talk to him just a week before he died. I keep thinking that if he had just made it to Spokane things would be so different.

Just last night I was up with Kim and the kids and Kim and I were sitting out on the porch having some wine while the kids were playing. Ben was being a little bugger and telling Kim she had a big butt. We decided that since his name is Benjamin Michael, she couldn't expect much different. We were also watching Emmy running around with a soccer ball and she has absolutely no butt! We were laughing that her pants hardly stay on with no butt to hold them up and she was following after Mike that way. Of course we all remember that favorite line of his about everything being big except his butt. :-)

Breakfast - remeber how even when we were all out/up late in the Broadway house or out jumping, he would be the first to try to get us up and moving in the morning to go out to breakfast. I would just want to keep sleeping or grab something quick on the way to the DZ, but Mikey wouldn't hear of it. It COULDN'T be fast food, only a full on breakfast complete with a side of something, usually pancakes. I'd get something small and sit quietly and eat, but he'd still beat me every time. Guess it didn't help that I'm the slowest eater in the world. Even Ben and Emily beat me most of the time already.

Just about every day I remember some little part of Mike, some little saying, viewpoint, or attitude, some discussion, activity, or adventure, even some disagreements, arguments or issues we had over the many years. For just about every instance, time of day, or event I can think of something Mike would have to say about it. He certainly wasn't short on words. :-)

I still have the pictures albums I made for the memorial sitting on my coffee table and I look at them regularly. Sometimes I don't even open them up, I just pause for a minute as I walk by and look at the closed books sitting there and a flood of memories come back yet again. Although less frequent, I'm certainly not beyond tears yet and I'm not sure I ever will be.


Blue Skies,
Megan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That's one thing I miss and have missed ever since we all moved out of Eugene....getting up early and doing the breakfast tradition, and than going back to bed before going to the dz...

And you Mike, complete opposites!!! He would eat so fast and you, you are still the slowest eater I've ever encountered...What did he say one time, the tall guy looks down at the small girl and they say hmmmm, our kids might be normal!!!

You two were too cute....that day after the sushi party, I'll never forget watching you guys mop the wood floors, hip to hip the entire time. You pooring out the wood cleaner, him mopping it up after you, baby steps across the entire floor. I watched you guys in my pathetic hungover state and cracked up on the inside.

It's nice to hear you, thanks for replying....give the fam a big 'ole group hug..
Smile & Laugh everyday, if you're not, change something..Life is now...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I love your stories about Mike. I think about him every day. Pulled the grill out for the first time this year the other day and could just picture Mike standing there smoking his cigarettes, telling me stories about his day. He put that grill together for me. He was so freakin helpful with everything... total gentleman. I miss him too. Most of all I miss his hugs. Damn those hugs were great.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Vanessa,

Yep, we were opposites in a lot of ways, sometimes that made things entertaining and fun, other times it made them frusterating. At the very least, it made for good stories.

The car story is funny - I remember he loved to eat messy snacks in the car. Cheetos especially. I'd look over at him and he's elbow deep in the Cheetos bag with orange crap all over his fact and hands. He'd just grin real big with a mouthful of Cheetos, then I'd catch him wiping his hands all over his pants, or worse, our car. I'd have to scold him and get on him about it, but he'd always just smile, shrug and look at me like I was crazy for not wanting Cheeto scum all over the place. Who wouldn't ??? He just loved to drive me nuts knowing I was neurotic about those kinds of things. I think he did it on puropose. I used to tell him I didn't want to scold him like a kid because it made me feel bad, but whatever thing he was doing still drove me nuts, but he would reply that he actually liked it and thought it was cute. Great combo, huh? He wanted to make me yell at him on purpose because he liked it!!! Crazy kid!!

Movies - remember going to hte movies with him? never complete without a HUGE Pepsi and about 5 bags of candy of some sort and maybe some popcorn to finish it off. He could never leave candy uneaten and as soon as it was open, he had devoured it. He was so excited when Ben was old enough to eat candy because he could spoil him and make it seem like the candy was for Ben, not Mike who it was really for. He also just loved to get Ben riled up so he would drive Kim nuts! A 2 year old on a sugar high - Mike and Ben had a lot in common!!! :-)

The whole enchilada - he hated to leave leftovers of any kind. A big bowl of my smoked salmon dip, he would eat the whole thing. A huge Pepsi, he would drink it up in no time flat. Breakfast always came with a side of something and he would eat it all, as I said before. Buying new gear, always the best and most expensive thing he could find. Ordering pizza, all gone before you know it.

For those of you who don't know, his birthday was May 30, so it's just around the corner. This next week will be a little tough thinking about that. I can't even remember all the different things we did for his birthday. Trips to Florida, surprise fiesta in DC, skydiving... he loved to have almost a whole week of birthday if he could, but wasn't too big on presents. I think he just liked the idea of celebrating and being the center of attention. It was fun to make him the center of attention too because he just soaked it up!

What a sweetheart! I'm sure I'll think of more stories too. If anyone else has more to share, keep them coming!!!

Blue Skies,
Burrowing Betty
(Megan)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mmmmm, I forgot about your smoked salmon dip, num num!!!

I went ahead and started Mike's birthday week today...I woke up and ate ice cream for breakfast, I figured that would be a good start. I went to the dz and pulled out the little footage I got from his 30th birthday week at crosskeys...I've wanted to edit something and send it out to you guys but I just couldn't bring myself to watch it for the longest time...There are some priceless moments though, I'm going to eat some more ice cream and start putting that together tonight.

Reading your letters has put a smile back on my face remembering the good ole days, thanks...

Remember when we did the Butte to Butte demo? What chaos! Did any of us have over 300 jumps?!!!! I forgot my steering wheel had locked up and we spent the rest of the day in the village waiting for it to get fixed or towed away but glad that it kept us from going back to the dz to face humiliation!!! I wish we had video of that!!!
Smile & Laugh everyday, if you're not, change something..Life is now...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
He was a total gentleman........until he'd start spouting off his, 'So there I was, balls deep in this chick and.........' always filling in the blank with something random! A nut head but a gentleman...BBQ it up and toast to him girlie girl!
Smile & Laugh everyday, if you're not, change something..Life is now...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The grill - I can't even remember how many funny things came out of Mike playing around on the grill. He could fix up a mean ribeye steak! Then there was the time we decided to do the deep fried turkey in our backyard in DC. His family does it in Florida, but we had never done it. Getting it ready was pretty hilarious with the little syringe full of italian dressing and the chunks kept clogging the syringe. We both ended up with italian dressing from head to toe trying to stick that bird full of that stuff. I think there's still a few gallons of peanut oil all over the place. It was just a little too full and he didn't expect quite that much of a boil on it. I just tried to stay out of the way and let him weild the man tools! It came out pretty good!!!

Blue Skies,
Megan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Gosh... I haven't been on here for a while and it's really fun to read all the stories about Michael. Even if I wasn't there for all of the events, I can totally picture Michael behaving that way and saying all those funny things.

I remember when Michael first moved out to Eugene. He and two of his friends moved in with us, as John and I have just got married. It was quite the full house. I remember him leaving one night with his two friends and told John and I that he would be leaving for approximately 3 hours and that we would have the house to ourselves for approximately 3 hours and that we may want to use our time wisely. Then he looked at John and repeated how they would be leaving for approximately 3 hours and said "dude, go light come candles or something". Nothing like having your younger brother scheduling your sex life for you!

Mike and I took a red eye flight to FL from Portland one time and we always like to mess around with our Mom. We started out at about 1am playing poker in the Portland airport with a stop over in Vegas. As they were calling final boarding in Vegas one of us hit the slots, only about $40, but all in quarters. We couldn't figure out how to carry all the change so Michael took off his sock and we filled it up and proceeded to use the money to buy cocktails on the plane all night. Once we arrived in FL around 6am, we had told Mom that Michael had his nose pierced. She was thinking small stud in the side nostril, but we took a small hooped earring and put it in the front of his nose like a bull ring. He got off the plane, my Dad was laughing so hard I thought we would pee his pants, and Michael just walked up to our Mom and licked the side of her face and told her how great Eugene was. I thought she might pass out. Not to mention we had both been drinking all night long.

My list of stories can go on and on. I really wish I was still adding to them. The ash dive for Michael is scheduled for Aug. 26, 2007 in Eugene. I can't wait to see all of you and celebrate Michael's life together. I look forward to being there and going to a bunch of places that Michael loved. Plus, visiting the Broadway house. There are so many great memories there and many projects that Michael did there, as well as all the projects from Vanessa, Miles, Joe, and Jason. That house will truly have all of your touches and memories there for life. I will always remember the fun times in that house because of all of you.

I look forward to seeing you all the end of the month.
:-) Kim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Okay, here's the scoop. Mike's ash dive will be this weekend on Sunday August 26 at Eugene Skydivers in Creswell, OR where he wanted it. This will be on the 1-year anniversary of his death, to the day.

Everyone will meet at Eugene Skydivers hangar at 8:00/8:15 a.m. and we will have wheels up at 8:30 a.m. Spectators will caravan/carpool from the hangar to the landing field about 15 minutes from the airport.

Please feel free to PM me or email me if you have questions or plan on attending and need directions.

R.I.P. Mikey, no one has forgotten you or ever will.

Blue Skies,
Megan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yesterday was two years....nothing to celebrate.

JoJo and I talked, we can't believe it has been a year since we let Mike free in those perfect puffy Eugene clouds that seemed to be the norm back in the day.

I was really tempted to do a bit of a bandit jump yesterday and land off with the whole fuck it attitude that we all ran wild with together during the summer of bandit jumps.

I did however by some crazy delicious looking chocolate caramel almond, etc numminess of dessert and munch the entire chunk before dinner in Mike fashion!

What makes me even more sad, is that about a week before this time last year, Tonto sent me a message encouraging me to be strong and not to let myself drown in sorrow but to remember why I'm a better person by having Mike as a friend....It wasn't your time either Tonto, and I'm thankful I saved all your amazing letters. Fuck man...Fuck
Smile & Laugh everyday, if you're not, change something..Life is now...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Happy Birthday Mikey! I know it's not until tomorrow, but I remember how you loved to celebrate for at least the whole week, sometimes even the whole month. You would always remind me that it was okay to do fun things and not get the chores done because it was your birthday (or the day before your birthday, or the day after, or your birthday weekend, or your birthday week....) Of course you did the same for everyone else and instigated as much fun around you as possible, whether we were celebrating you, me, or any one of your friends and family.

I remember a little surprise party we threw for you in DC where an acomplice helped keep you away from the house for the whole day and we had all our friends come over for a little fiesta complete with sombreros. There was a chocolate cake involved and some great pics of you going at the whole cake, just a man and his fork.

Sweet Life - Of course a birthday was always an occasion to head to Sweet Life in Eugene for an assortment of desserts, way more than any of us could eat, but we had to try a bunch just to get an appropriate variety.

Happy Birthday and I know you are enjoying some Sweet Life right now!

Love,
M

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

0