OBITUARY

Michael Ryan Birdwell

March 5, 1978September 6, 2018

Michael Ryan Birdwell was born on March 5, 1978 in Bakersfield, California and passed away on September 6, 2018 in Fort Collins, Colorado

Services

  • Graveside Service Sunday, September 16, 2018
REMEMBERING

Michael Ryan Birdwell

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Osama Maqsood

September 27, 2018

Mr. Birdwell was my English teacher in the 8th grade and the 11th grade. When I first met Mr. Birdwell we both were not very fond of each other. But as time passed he become a very positive and influential person in my school career. He provided a lot of his students including me a comfortable and easy going environment for us to learn that many other teachers could not match. Mr. Birdwell has always been the most caring; During my junior year I was having trouble with my eyesight and could not read anything on the board as I would sit far in the back in his class. He constantly reminded me in a sarcastic and funny way to go get glasses but I refused to go as I wasn't comfortable with the idea of wearing glasses. After his failure to convince me to go get glasses alone, he at his last attempt succeeded as he made me go get glasses with him. Mr. Birdwell you will forever live on in my memories as a caring, funny and kind human being.

Maha Hajhassan

September 26, 2018

Mr. Birdwell was my writing teacher in 11th grade. He means so much to me and I will always continue looking up to him. Even though he was not my teacher in 12th grade I still went to visit him during my lunch breaks and we would laugh and he was always someone I could confide in. He taught me so much over a course of two years and I am eternally grateful. He was a great man that was always there for me as a teacher and as someone I could talk to about my personal or academic problems. On my graduation day he told me how proud he was in me and I will never forget the way he used to walk down the hallways with a smile on his face. I really miss him and I wish I got to speak to him one last time and tell him about college. Mr. Birdwell will always be loved and remembered. May his soul rest in peace.

Kaja Surborg

September 21, 2018

This is still one of my happiest memories

Hilleri Vaughn

September 12, 2018

Some of the last words Mike said to me, "If its something you love, then go for it. "

Ali Alabbadi

September 12, 2018

One of the most creative teachers I've eer met, took the time to help all his students succeed even if he his teaching method wasn't traditional.

Natalia Papadopoulou

September 12, 2018

I was one of Mr. Birdwell's students in ACS from 2015-2016, and was lucky to share two of the most important moments of my life with him. Mr. Birdwell was a key figure in helping me build a computer lab for refugees living in the Gaza Camp. Though the project seemed far-reaching to many, Mr. Birdwell believed in my vision, and always helped me find solutions to problems I encountered. Mr. Birdwell was a humanitarian; unlike what most teachers would do, he let me put the project out of the context of "school" simply because he wanted to see a difference be made. Even if that meant missing A LOT of class, he retained his trust in my project, and in the cause.

Thanks to his support, we got the attention of the College Board and travelled to Anaheim to speak at the AP Conference in 2016. It was one of the most exhilarating moments of my life, and will never forget Mr. Birdwell's reaction when he found out that 2 of his students were amongst the 3 that would speak at this renowned conference. That's right, Mr. Birdwell, of all AP teachers worldwide, was one of two teachers that were chosen for this conference. If that alone isn't proof of his hard work, passion and intellect, then I don't know what is.

Here is the e-mail that I received from Mr. Birdwell that I will never forget.

"N,
In contact with the College Board. You have stirred the pot, my girl. I'm so happy.
We'll need to be in close contact the next few days; please keep this account open on your phone.
Relax some.
And just sit and be damned proud. I'll let you know more the moment I do.
Mr. B"

Anaheim 2016 was the last time I saw Mr. Birdwell, but having spent three full days around him, I got to know him much better and will never forget how big of a heart he had. I pray for his family and friends, and that they stay strong during this hard time. I'm in Amman, and if theres any support I can provide from here, please contact me at nxpapadopoulou@gmail.com.

May his soul rest in eternal peace.

Joe Gates

September 11, 2018

When I got to Bolivia I didn’t know a soul, knew zero Spanish and had no place to live. You and Wendy were the first people I met there. You taught me Spanish, found a place for all of us to live and made me feel like a friend from day one. I will never forget you Mike. Love you man.

FROM THE FAMILY