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Michael Ray Webb was born in Tahlequah, Oklahoma to Raymond Dale and Frances Imogene (Clay) Webb on September 5th, 1958. He departed this life on October 25, 2022 with his family by his side.
Michael was a natural at teaching, talking, teasing, storytelling, and singing.
Michael Ray grew up in Tahlequah, OK the 2nd of 4 children. He graduated from Tahlequah High school where he was a member of the H.S. band and an all-state baritone player. His summers were spent hauling hay with his family.
He loved singing harmony and was a founding member of The Gospel Truth Quartet which led to him meeting the love of his life Nancy Smith. They married in 1980 and had 4 children, whom he loved to brag about.
Mike graduated with his Bachelor's degree in teaching from Northeastern State University and began his teaching career inTohatchi, NM on the Navajo Reservation. He taught Adult Education and worked at the Oklahoma Production center developing a special bond with the residents. While working at the NSU Cuebowl he taught his children how to bowl. In 1986, he began working at Shady Grove School beginning his 36 year reign as the one and only Mr. Mike. His creativity brought learning to life with skits, sock puppets, rockets, kites, chalkboard race car tracks, and robotics. Mr. Mike taught many subjects but was especially gifted at teaching mathematics.
At the end of each school year, Mike loaded his family up and headed for Branson and enjoyed fishing at Burnt Cabin. Mr. Mike retired from teaching in 2022. His brief retirement was filled with telling stories to his grandkids, playing music at multiple venues and helping his daughter move into his childhood home. He had even decided overalls would be his official retirement "uniform." Mr. Mike had plans of returning back to his home-away-from-home to teach part-time at Shady Grove School.
Mike was a self-taught music man and aspiring comedian. He spent many afternoons entertaining at the Senior Citizen's Center and many long nights of picking and grinning with friends. There wasn't an instrument he picked up that he couldn't learn how to play including: baritone, guitar, trumpet, banjo, piano, recorder, kazoos, ukulele, washboard, bongo drums, thumb harp, steel drum, harmonica and was learning to play his grandfather's fiddle
He was a simple man who prized people over possessions and saw life and potential in ordinary things - why buy new, when you can fix what you have? He babied and kept his 94 blue and silver Chevy Silverado pickup purring like a kitten. He never met a stranger. Wherever he went if he saw you and he knew you, he'd stop and talk...... and talk some more. He had a friend's list a mile long, and loved to drink coffee and shoot the bull with his McDonald's homies and talk to his Aunt Anna for an hour every single morning.
Mike was preceded in death by his parents, Raymond and Frances Imogene Webb, and his brother, Patrick Kelley Webb
He is still known and loved as "Dad" to Sarah Webb, Erin Webb, Philip and Ali Webb, and Bessy and David Phipps. "Papa Mike" to Evelyn, Dustin, Raymond, Joseph, and June. "Brother" to Dawn Stott and Lori Robertson. "Nephew" to Anna Murgado and Betty Laferry. "Uncle Mike" to a slew of nieces and nephews. "Friend" to more people than we ever knew. And "Mr. Mike" to his Shady Grove School family.
His Children invite you to come celebrate his life at the Shady Grove School Gym on Thursday, November 10th at 3pm, where we will honor his teaching legacy with kites, rockets, Pi & coffee, and a pop quiz.
You can stop by Hart Funeral Home, 1506 N. Grand Ave., in Tahlequah anytime during the weekdays from 9 am - 5 pm to sign his guest book and leave a memory.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Shady Grove School.