Final Words


Todd and I have a few things to say before we stop posting here. As Todd mentions, we’re going to leave the last few posts since Mike’s death here so you can read the condolences and rememberances. Then, after a week or so, Mike’s web master, Steven, will archive those posts for posterity but the site will appear as Mike left it when he died. This was his home on the web and, like bad company, I’ve overstayed my welcome.

First, here’s Todd:

so matt had this great idea for us to post one final post here on mike’s blog to sorta settle up and then, after a week or so, remove these last non-mike posts and leave mike’s entire blog–archived and all–up indefinitely, as part of his legacy, so that mike will live on.i love, here is our final post. i’d like to thank all of you–ALL OF YOU–who posted their comments and ‘e’d us and left myspace messages, who sent their thoughts and prayers, sympathies and condolensces–i cannot tell you how much that love and that support helped us all.thank you.

funny–or spooky–, mike and i were talking just a few months ago about all the projects we had in the cooker, all the stories we wanted to tell. he said that he had been a bit down thinking that he wanted to leave a nice legacy and that it had been his brother
matt who reminded him of tellos. matt told him that tellos alone was so much more than anyone could ask for from a lifetime.

we were both very proud of tellos.
and i’m sure that’s where he is now.

aug 22 2K7

Me again.

I’ve just lost the coolest big brother ever and I’m going to miss him more than I can express. He was young, healthy and had such wonderful things ahead of him, just over the horizon. And it would be so easy for me to get angry right now. Mike and I both inherited that hair-trigger Wieringo temper. I still have it. But something happened with Mike when he started drawing comics. Either it was achieving his lifelong dream or meeting so many wonderful people like Todd and Craig. Maybe it was just his amazing empathy for other creatures. But he got rid of the temper. He became the gentle soul we’ve come to know the last fifteen years or so.

So, though I could easily give in to the oh-so-tempting urge to put my fist through a wall right now, I won’t. I’m gonna do what Mike would do. I’m going to laugh a little, cry a little (or a lot, actually) and hug Charlie and Toonces and my family. And let the anger go. As someone else said in a tribute, I’m going to be like Mike.

If this horrible tragedy, and that’s what it is, has taught me anything, it’s that the old cliche, “life’s too short”, is a cliche for a reason. If there’s someone you love, tell them you love them every day. Quit putting off that phone call and just do it. If there are friends you’ve lost touch with, reach out. If you’ve hurt someone or they’ve hurt you, ask for forgiveness and forgive. Be good to others and to yourself. Get that check up. Eat healthier. Exercise. If your job is causing you stress, find another one that you love. And learn to love each other a little more. Because life IS too short. In fact, life, it seems, is shorter for some than for others.

I want to again thank everyone, Mike’s friends and his fans, for all the support and all the donations to the ASPCA and the Hero Initiative. So many folks have been so wonderful and helpful, I can’t single out too many because I’d forget some. But the shining lights have been Todd and Craig for their support and friendship to Mike and now his family. Mike’s web master, Steve, for allowing us to post here and keeping the site going under trying circumstances. Scott Cates of MothComix for showing class under pressure. Andrew and Vanessa at Chapel Hill Comics for coming through for us when they were dealing with their own tragedy. Shelton Drum of Heroes Aren’t Hard to Find for making Mike part of his family and going out of his way to help us. Richard Case, Randy Green and Mike’s buddy Glenora for checking on us and Charlie. Cully Hamner, Jeff Parker, Scott Kurtz, Mark Waid, Jamar Nicholas, Rich Faber, Traci Wagner and Chris (“Kempliiiiiitzzzz!”) Kempel and a hundred other people who called my brother their friend and proved it with heartfelt rememberances online or at the service. To my friends, Christian, Don, Marvin and Paul just for being there.

Most of all, thank you to Mike’s fans. You bought his books, you enjoyed his art and you’ve always shown class here at Mike’s blog. This was the friendliest place on the internet and I looked forward to coming here every other day to see Mike’s newest sketch and read your comments. I’ll really miss that. And to the fan that placed Mike’s artwork up and down the street outside the service…the unexpected rain may have washed away your efforts, but they weren’t in vain. We know about it and it touched us deeply. Thank you.

Take care of yourselves and if you want to keep in touch with me or Todd or Craig, we’re on the web. I don’t kid myself that anyone came to my blog for any other reason than I’m Mike’s brother. But I’d still like to hear from you. Soon, this site will be as Mike left it, looking forward to great things. He was taken much too young. But he dreamed big and he achieved those dreams.

How many of us can truly say that?

August 23, 2007

More on Mike’s Memorial Service on Friday

Enough people have asked about this that it warrants a post, though every time I do this, I feel like an imposter. Please bear with me. We’re planning on getting together after the service at a pub down the block from the funeral home. I’ll withhold the name until the service, but I thought people who were planning to come should know that we have something planned. The pub is aware we’re coming. I understand some of you may have to leave or that groups may splinter off and do their own thing. That’s fine. Craig, Todd, Suzanne and I will be going to the pub. I don’t know about you, but I plan on getting blotto in Mike’s honor. (You with me, Leaf?)

Mike’s best friend Todd Dezago has posted the following on his blog and we both thought it prudent to copy it here. I think this sums up what we’re needing right now. Please take it in the spirit it’s given. We’re grieving right now and just need some time to get ourselves collected. Here’s Todd:

“…and to everyone who have so warmly and generously asked/offered/begun putting together the many tribute books and portfolios, we are moved beyond words.truthfully, the number of people wanting to do tribute books has become a bit overwhelming and, at the moment, we’re all still pretty numb about what has happened. we would love to be involved in any tribute that is being done for mike, but right now matt, suzanne, and i just can’t think in those directions.
once some of this crazy sadness is over we’ll be glad to talk more about this.
just too sad right now.”
Again, thanks for all the good thoughts and all the prayers. If you’re coming tomorrow, we’ll see you then. If you can’t make it, please keep us in your thoughts.Take care,


Memorial Service for Mike

First, let me thank everyone who has expressed their condolences online and over the phone. We have been, frankly, overwhelmed by all the good will from all over the world. I don’t think our parents fully understood (nor did Mike) just how much he was loved and admired. To get us through this, my wife and I have spent a couple of sleepless nights reading the postings here and at Newsarama (thank you, Matt Brady) and the John Byrne Forum and it’s helped a great deal. Most touching of all was Cully Hamner’s heartfelt eulogy at Newsarama. Thank you so much, Cully. You are a beautiful man.

Now to the hard part. Mike will have two funeral services.

First, there will be a public viewing this Friday (August 17th) from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Hall-Wynne Funeral Service at 1113 West Main Street in Durham, NC, followed by a chapel service at 2:00. This will be open to any of Mike’s friends and colleagues who’d like to attend. Please come prepared to share a Mike story. I plan on putting you on the spot. It would really help our Mom and Dad through this.

Second, at a time to be determined, there will be a private service for Mike’s family in Lynchburg, where we grew up.

As mentioned before, in lieu of flowers, if you’d like please send donations to the A.S.P.C.A. ( or to the Hero Initiative ( I had previously mentioned the CBLDF but, having time to think about it, I realized that the Hero Initiative was more Mike’s style. Those wishing to contribute to the CBLDF anyway, please feel free as it’s a worthwhile cause as well.

Finally, some of you have expressed concern over what would become of Mike’s little buddy and constant companion, his cat Charlie. Well, breathe easy. Charlie is coming to live with us in Richmond with our other cat Toonces. I’m not sure how Toonces is going to take to living with the little dynamo that is Charlie, but family is family. Charlie is doing well but obviously misses Mike. He’s been sleeping on Mike’s bed and under his drawing table but he’s active and friendly.

Take care, everyone and, on behalf of our parents, my wife and me, thanks for everything.


R.I.P. Mike

As Mike himself would say, “just a quick one for now.”

Our family is, I’m sure you’ll understand, in shock. By now, the word has spread that Mike passed away Sunday night of apparent heart failure. That’s all we know for now. When we hear more, I’ll share it here. I’ll also post any news of a memorial service here once we figure out just what we’re going to do. We tried to notify all Mike’s closest friends before word got out. Unfortunately, news travels fast and I’m afraid some of you, despite our best efforts, found out the hard way. My apologies.

On behalf of our family, I’d like to thank everyone for the tremendous outpouring of support and sympathy. It means a lot, particularly to our Mom and Dad. Mike had so many friends and admirers, a fact I had to continually remind him of. He was so humble and unsure of himself. I think it would really surprise him to hear all the love being expressed here and elsewhere. I haven’t had the time or the heart to read everything posted but I plan to. So I ask that everyone share their favorite Mike story. It will help us through this trying time and you would have our gratitude.

Though we haven’t ironed out the details of how we plan to honor Mike, I’d like to suggest that, in lieu of cards or flowers, anyone who is so inclined please donate to the ASPCA or the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund in his name. I have a feeling Mike would like that.

Take care,