James Michael 'Mike' Hoskinson died, at age 60, when excessive duct tape and bailing wire were not enough to fix his engine. The Pocket-T aficionado, amateur geologist, history buff, Renaissance man, and perpetual 12-year-old boy trapped his last squirrel on Thursday, June 22, 2017.
Born in Haven, KS, the youngest of three and only son; Mike, alternately, terrorized and loved his two sisters, his parents and the family farm he called home for much of his life. His childhood instilled life-long interests in geology (rocks, specifically), history (military) and the environment.
From his mother, Mike inherited a collector gene and many rocks, coins, spoons, stamps, patches, pins, shot glasses, books, antiques, depression glassware, Native American artifacts and pottery enjoy climate-controlled accommodations today as a result. He rarely passed up a good auction or estate sale.
Fort Hays State University, KS, alum, Mike's (aka 'Hoke') college friends would be life-long friends. Rob, Mark, Larry, Bruce, Rick, John and others made 4 years in Hays, America, entertaining and mostly legal. The trailer that many of them lived in after dorm life, however, was not.
Mike earned a bachelor's degree and went to work at Boeing. He was always interested in airplanes, inspired by his dad, Cecil, a WW2 aviator. As a draftsman and technical writer, his work included many classified military projects, including the B747 Air Force One. He retired from Boeing with 20 years of service.
A confirmed bachelor, Mike met his true love, Heidi, later in life and - surprise - became an advanced paternal-age father. As a stay-at-home dad to a 'mini-me' in little girl's clothing, Zoey, Mike traded top-secret military projects for diaper-changing, baby food, learning to walk, talk, and potty-training.
Forever curious and unpretentious, Mike loved to read, learn, and travel. He earned a Master's degree in environmental studies at Friends University, KS, after retirement. He traveled extensively across the US including national parks and historical places as his favorite destinations, and went abroad to the United Kingdom, Scotland, and Canada. He has the finest county courthouse picture collection he's ever seen.
His love of life, family and friends knew no bounds. He was thoughtful, kind and funny. He had a knack for giving great gifts, taking pictures, writing hilarious letters and postcards, and reciting useless historical facts and mindless trivial knowledge. The 'girls' will miss his laugh, his crazy hair, the forced marches through war battlefields on vacation, and the love and affection he showered upon them.
Mike is survived by his wife, Heidi and daughter, Zoey Hoskinson (the girls) of Claremore, OK; sister June Krell of Haven, KS; sister and brother-in-law Jane and Rick Tolin of Haven, KS; numerous nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles and cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents, Cecil and Virginia Hoskinson of Haven, KS.
The following Celebration of Life services are planned:
Saturday, August 12, 2017, 1:00 p.m. - Pleasant Grove United Methodist Church, Burrton, KS
Claremore service arrangements to be announced
In lieu of flowers, the family has established a college savings account for Zoey Hoskinson at TTCU, 1800 S. Hwy 66, Claremore, OK, 74019. Or, please donate to honor Mike and further research to cure diabetes - American Diabetes Association at www.diabetes.org or heart disease at American Heart Association at www.heart.org
Published on July 28, 2017