McGilley State Line Chapel


Michael Patrick Ireland

29 septiembre , 19372 septiembre , 2020

Michael (Mike) Patrick Ireland, 82, passed away on September 2, 2020, after a full and eventful life. A man with a sharp wit and mischievous twinkle in his eye, Mike was often the center of attention. He loved a good joke and was quick to share his laughter. He was also a loving father and husband who will be deeply missed.

The son of George and Gertrude Ireland, he was born September 29, 1937, in Aurora, Illinois. He grew up in the Chicago area attending St. George Catholic High School where he played basketball and was named an All-American. He went on to play ball at the University of Notre Dame from 1956 to 1959. While at Notre Dame, he met his first wife, Marie Malek to whom he was married for 39 years until her passing. In 2003, he married Nancy Miller, with whom he spent the rest of his life.

He began his career with the Coca-Cola Company, rising to regional vice-president. As a negotiator of labor contracts, he demonstrated his toughness. But, in the era of the martini, Mike drank nothing but Coke his entire life.

After 14 successful years with Coca-Cola, he moved to the Hesse Corporation, a truck manufacturing company, first as President and later as owner. He significantly increased the range of Hesse’s operations, opening plants in Poland, Japan, and Henderson, Nevada, in addition to the Kansas City based plant. He sold the company in 1997 and retired to pursue his passion of golf. Mike was truly devoted to golf. From his first round at the Edgewood Valley course near Chicago, Illinois, he kept the score card from every course he ever played. He traveled across the world playing on as many courses as he could find. In the end, he played 1,629 courses, in 12 countries, on three different continents. When asked how long he would play, he replied “As long as I’m on this side of the grass.” Locally he was a member of Blue Hills Country Club for many years. Mike is preceded in death by his parents George and Gertrude Ireland, sister Kathy Schweiger, and wife Marie Malek Ireland.

He leaves behind wife Nancy Miller Ireland, daughters Karen Ireland Dunlap (Jim), Barbara Ireland, Christine Ireland McKee (Charles), Cynthia Ireland Arnold (Andrew), and Kelly Bridget Ireland (Aaron), stepsons Jeff Miller (Shara), Aaron Miller, Marty Miller, and 12 grandchildren.

Rosary will be at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church, 14251 Nall Ave., Leawood, KS Tuesday, September 8 at 10:00 a.m. followed by a visitation and funeral Mass at 11:00. There will be a private burial.

Donations can be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.


  • St. Jude Children's Research Hospital


  • Rosary Service

    martes, 8 septiembre , 2020

  • Visitation

    martes, 8 septiembre , 2020

  • Mass of Christian Burial

    martes, 8 septiembre , 2020

  • Committal Service

    martes, 8 septiembre , 2020


Michael Patrick Ireland

have a memory or condolence to add?

Tracy Moore

septiembre 13, 2020

Hi, Nancy
I am so sorry for your loss of this great man. I’ve been serving you both for years at Bogeys Windy City Pub, and come to enjoy our weekly visits very much! Mike knew exactly what he wanted and wasn’t afraid to ask for it! He liked what he liked, nothing fancy! And we all so enjoy seeing both of you... I hope you’ll still visit😊. Sending you prayers of comfort and peace, take care of you!
Sincerely, Tracy Moore

Mary Ann & Jack Aug

septiembre 7, 2020

Dear Nancy:

We were saddened to read about Mike’s death. I was thinking about Pelican Sound and thought about Mike and searched his name in the internet. I enjoyed playing golf with Mike and going to dinner with Nancy and Mike.

Best wishes:
Mary Ann & Jack Aug
Pittsburgh, Pa.

Marion Glover

septiembre 6, 2020

“In 1969 I first met Mike Ireland since I was in training in St. Louis with The Coca-Cola Company and he was my boss. At first I was not sure he wanted someone that he had to show the ropes but quickly I began to learn not only how good he was at his relationships with bottlers of Coca-Cola but also how he wanted to help me down the long road with the company (especially as we traveled through Southern Illinois and Missouri). Throughout my years at the company I spent a lot of time in Atlanta but I must say he was always my mentor and friend.

Later when I left The Coca-Cola Company and started a new profession assisting owners of companies selling their business, I got a call my Mike who at that time owned Hesse. He said “I want to explore selling my business and although you don’t know anything about manufacturing truck bodies, I know you and with my help we can sell this company” Well with his and Marie’s help and the assistance of his son-in-law Jim, we did.

You all know how much Mike benefited from Marie and how she got him through Notre Dame and raised a wonderful family that he dearly loved (and was proud).

We would also see Mike and Nancy on their trips south for the winter and we want to salute Nancy for all she did for the big guy…she was truly an angel sent from on high.

Gail and I will always remember the good times and laughs we had with his jokes and pranks…I will keep the good ones private for now.

God bless you fellow, I will miss the big hugs”

Marion Glover

Brian Van Dyck

septiembre 4, 2020

He also had a sister, not mentioned in this memorial. Her name is Judy Van Dyck living in California.

Bill Casey

septiembre 4, 2020

Michael and I met when I worked for the coca-cola co.we bought truck bodies from Michael he was the best sales person in the soft drink industry.Michael loved golf and I played a few rounds with him lost all the time. Michael on the first tee was bigger than life and because he was bald and always had to put on sun screen.
My first time playing golf with Michael he put sun screen on his head Not knowing it he put a big blob on his head and quickly said “Dam did you see that bird go by and pooped right on my head.” I am telling You every time he did it everybody felt sorry for Michael until he rub it all over his bald head and said I got you didn’t I.Michael we love you Rest In Peace bill casey

Ted Highberger

septiembre 3, 2020

Where to start.
First, he got me playing as many golf courses as possible. He won.
Had over 1600 to my measly 785.
Met at a soft drink convention in the 70s. After an OSHA presentation, the osha guy asked for questions. Michael asked why osha required split toilet seats in the workplace. Before he could answer, Michael said” It’s so when the osha guy is inspecting your plant , and he’s getting a drink of water the lid won’t hit his head”.
Classic Michael.
We miss you
Ted Highberger


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