Michael Anthony Walraven
August 7, 1957 – May 2, 2019
Michael Anthony Walraven of 1927 W. Hudson, Peoria, Illinois passed away on May 2nd, 2019 at OSF St, Francis Medical Center. Michael was born August 7th, 1957 to William and Audrey Walraven in Peoria, Illinois. Michael was a graduate of St. Johns Grade School and Bergan High School in Peoria and was a standout pitcher who was still able to pull the string on curveballs on his children and even grandchildren in many, many backyard wiffleball games. He worked throughout the area as a home improvement salesperson and marketing specialist, where he was able to help teach other people, including his family, how to learn a trade and how to be a salesperson. He is survived by his brother Wilbur (Marsha) Walraven, his sisters Judy Pouyer, Carolyn (John) Herreweyers, Deborah Kestner, his two children, Anthony and Michelle, and his three grandchildren, Joshua (12), Colton (3), and Lilliana (7 months).
Mike was a kind, personable man who was the biggest cheerleader, the loudest supporter, and the most rabid backer of his family. He was there to comfort and support his children and was there to be the spoiler and nap time buddy to his grandchildren. Mike was the one who could sooth the fussy granddaughter, who showed up to the football and baseball games, who took every toy out of the box to play and then made chocolate milk after wards. His memory will live on in a million funny stories, thousands of memories and pictures, and the love he gave and received.
The old saying "Never met a stranger" could have been written for Mike. He talked to everyone. He knew everyone he bought coffee from, every place he bought soda from. The sounds of songs he made up on the spot could be heard belted out by his grandkids in the backyard, or coming from his room as he rocked one of them to sleep. He made nicknames for everyone, and they were always funny or catchy,
He passed many things onto his family; a love of the Chicago White Sox and Bears, a passion for playing card games like Rummy, a beautiful sense of humor, a concern for the welfare and security of his family. We are so blessed to have had Mike in our lives, as a Father, a Grandfather, a Sibling, and a friend. We will miss him passionately and we will make sure his memory stays fresh just as passionately. A celebration for Michael's life will be held at Kenny's Westside Pub (112 SW Jefferson Avenue in Peoria) on Saturday May 11th from Noon to 4 p.m. All are welcome to attend. Memorials may be made to the charity of the donors choice.