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Michael Aloysius Hardwick

February 13, 1965 ~ February 22, 2022 (age 57)

Obituary

Michael Aloysius Hardwick passed away the afternoon of February 22, 2022 at the age of 57 in Tualatin, Oregon, due to complications from Covid. Michael fought courageously and valiantly until the end. He was aided in his last days by the caring and compassionate medical professionals at Legacy Meridian Park Medical Center. He was surrounded by his loving family.

Michael was born in Portland, Oregon to William Carroll and Anna Maria Hardwick on February 13th, 1965. He was the youngest of six children and lived his entire life in northwestern Oregon.

When Michael was a small child, he lost his older brother, Martin. Immediately following this tragedy, his parents divorced. While Michael grew up surrounded by his four older sisters and his mother, his fond memories of his brother stayed with him for the rest of his life. He often wondered what it would have been like to have his older brother as a mentor and role model during what turned out to be a difficult and tumultuous youth.

At thirteen years old, Michael was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. He learned to navigate the challenges that came with it very early on. He worked extremely hard to ensure the disease didn’t limit his capacity for living life. Many who knew him would agree he lived with a zest for life that few experience, and at times, came at his own expense.

Michael met and married his first wife, Julie, in 1993. They raised two beautiful sons, William and Aaron, who are his immense pride and joy. Their childhood friends would adopt Michael as their own Dad, as he welcomed and made room for everyone in his home. Although Michael and Julie divorced when the boys were still young, Michael’s love and devotion to them is the single thing that drove everything he did.

As a child, Michael had an early fascination and wonder for technology. He entertained himself by deconstructing and reassembling transistor radios. This love of technology would follow him into adulthood. He worked with his hands to make a living in his earlier years, either working in construction, rebuilding trolleys with his father, or restoring classic vehicles. Michael also had a passion for teaching others what he, himself, had learned through trial and error.

Over time, diabetes began taking its toll on Michael’s body. While in his thirties, he lost his sight in his right eye and had limited vision in his left. His kidneys were also failing and his sister, Billy, donated a kidney to him. Michael never defined himself by these limitations. Despite his health and his age, Michael conquered the odds, and in his late thirties, went back to school and earned his bachelors’ degree in software engineering. He became an entrepreneur and started his own software engineering business.

In 2018, Michael met and married the woman of his dreams, Elizabeth Ndiema. Michael knew the moment he met her that she was the woman he wanted to dedicate the rest of his life to, and he did. Michael with Elizabeth was like watching a man reborn. He committed to being the best person he could be in her eyes. In embracing Elizabeth, he also embraced her Kenyan family, and her culture as his own.

Michael loved good food, good wine, and good music and it was his passion to do all of them well. He was an amazing cook, he had a vast and eclectic music playlist always right for the moment, and on sunny summer days you would find him at his favorite winery enjoying delicious Oregon wines.

Michael leaves a giant void in the lives of those who knew and loved him. He is survived by his sons, William and Aaron, his wife, Elizabeth, his mother Anna Maria Galizia, his sisters, Terrie, Martha, Billy, and Nicci, his nieces Zoey and Sophia, and his nephews Matt, Eric, Sean and Will. He also leaves behind a loving extended family both in this country, in Italy, and in Kenya. He was preceded in death by his father, William, his brother, Martin, and his sister, Kathy.

A memorial service will be held for Michael on April 9, 2022, at the First Unitarian Church of Portland, located in downtown Portland on 12th and Salmon, at 12:00pm, followed by a light lunch at the Eliot Center next door. Mask wearing is required in the Chapel. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the America Diabetes Association, in Michael’s name. For those who cannot make the service in person, there will be a livestreaming of the memorial available here: https://boxcast.tv/view/hardwick-memorial-gj2d7adhvxxxh7rjwxgz

 

 

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Services

Memorial Service
Saturday
April 9, 2022

12:00 PM
First Unitarian Church of Portland (Portland, Eliot Center)

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