Petersham – Michael E. Weeks, 62, of Petersham, died on Friday, May 3, 2019, surrounded by his family, ending an incredibly hard-fought battle with cancer. Even in the worst of his own personal circumstances, he maintained steadfast strength and hope, undoubtedly for the benefit of those he loved. He will always be remembered for his endless selflessness and commitment to the happiness of those around him.
He leaves his wife, Rebecca Davis-Weeks, his three daughters, Amy L. Gray, Sarah N. Weeks, and Alyson M. Weeks and her husband, Andrew Giza; his son, Alexander M. Weeks and his wife Ashlee (Richard) Weeks, five grandchildren, Joshua, Madison, and Riley Gray, Michael Smith, and Livi Giza. He also leaves his mother, M. Christine (Thivierge) Weeks, his brother, Kenneth Weeks, and his sister, Susan Weeks. He was predeceased by his father, Gilford W. Weeks. In addition to his family, Michael leaves many friends, with whom he shared countless good times; they remained a huge part of his life until the end.
Michael was born and grew up in Salisbury, Massachusetts and although he moved to central Massachusetts in his teen years, he always loved to return to the ocean. Throughout his life, he called many places home, including New Braintree, North Brookfield, West Brookfield and finally Petersham, which he had adoringly admired for years before buying a house there. His oldest friends and family lovingly referred to him as, “Mikey”, and his face lit up when his grandchildren called him “Oompa.” His hallmark trait was his dry, matter-of-fact sense of humor, which was hilarious, unexpected and unforgettable.
Michael was a renaissance man of sorts; the span of his mind and interests was limitless. He enjoyed being a little bit different than everyone else and loved to meet people that approached their lives the same way. He famously wore John Lennon glasses, had a menagerie of Mini Coopers, and always surprised us with his fashion sense. Michael became an expert in everything he had an interest in. He was permanently curious about the way the world worked, which is undoubtedly why he knew so much about everything. He was a deep, intellectual thinker. He loved to work with his hands, and he could engineer a solution to fix any problem. Over the years, Michael had a million different interests including biking, gardening, building furniture, and kayaking. He was a lifelong Boston sports fan, rarely missed a game, and loved to visit Fenway and the Garden.
Throughout Michael’s entire life, music was a universal remedy for any woe. He taught himself to play multiple instruments, but most notably he loved to play the banjo. The genres of music he listened to changed over the years, but he was always up to hear something new and loved to share the best tunes with his family and friends. Many of the best times of his life were spent around a campfire with his friends and family playing music.
Over the course of his life, Michael was a safety manager at Safety Kleen, a real estate broker and founder at Olde Village Realty Partnership, and most recently an oil burner technician at R.J. McDonald in Barre, who showed tremendous integrity and kindness as his employer during his illness. He gained a lot of satisfaction from learning something new every day and meeting new people. He made many great friends during his various roles.
Ultimately, Michael’s greatest joy in the world was his family, who he loved as much as a person possibly could. Michael called his time at home with Rebecca a “little slice of heaven on earth.” During their time together, they often traveled for weekend getaways to Vermont or New Hampshire, or enjoyed time with their friends. His children were his greatest point of pride. For them, he was the unwavering calm in any storm, the ultimate safety net, and the best teacher. As a father, he took it as his personal responsibility to teach his kids all there is to know about baseball. The drone of Red Sox games was a constant in the background at his house, and spring time always meant playing catch in the front yard. He and his kids used to go on countless “drives”, where they would spend hours getting lost and found with his giant map books as a guide, all the while talking about their lives and futures. He knew how to let the silence hang in a conversation, and that his sheer presence was often enough to help them to process their own problems. His grandchildren lit up his life. He loved to spend time with them, showing them his instruments, taking them for rides in his newest car, or hanging outside just to blow bubbles. He would have loved more time to watch them grow up. He was a great brother; his siblings were the most influential people in his life, and he seemed most at home when they were together. Michael’s easy-going and unassuming company will be desperately missed by all that loved him. If he was here to write this himself, he would close with a two-finger wave and tell all to “Take it easy,” until we meet again.
Calling hours for Michael will be held on Monday, May 13, 2019 from 5:00-7:00 PM at Varnum Funeral Home, Inc., 43 East Main Street in West Brookfield. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Worcester County Food Bank, 474 Boston Turnpike, Shrewsbury MA 01545.
Worcester County Food Bank
474 Boston Turnpike, Shrewsbury MA 01545