We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at McKinney Family Funeral Home, Inc.
Michael Waters was a loving family man whose friendship was a blessing to many. May his beautiful memory be an inspiration to those grieving in his absence.
Michael was born on Sunday, December 4, 1955, in Chicago, Illinois to Leon and Evelyn Waters. He was their eldest child and big brother to Annette and Felecia. As a child he was adventurous, sneaky and protective of his sisters. His fondness for candy resulted in many trips to the store for sweet treats, while his unstoppable drive and craftiness led him to build a banana seat bicycle for Annette using ‘found’ parts from the neighborhood. Summertime often meant visits to grandmother’s house, riding roller coasters and leading his sisters into numerous predicaments while ensuring the trio was never harmed.
Michael developed a passion for aviation at a very young age. It would prove to be an infatuation that helped shape his personal and professional life for decades to come.
Michael was excited to join the military. In 1972, then U.S. Congressman George W. Collins (7th District, Illinois) nominated Michael as his Principal Candidate to the United States Air Force Academy. Two years later in June of 1974, Michael graduated from Cregier Vocational High School and enlisted in the United States Navy. He attended recruit training and the Airman Apprenticeship program along the shores of Lake Michigan at Naval Training Command in Great Lakes, Illinois.
Initially Michael served as an undesignated Airman Apprentice working on the flight deck. But it didn’t take Michael long to realize that he needed something more. His first and only choice was for Aviation Storekeeper. In 1985, Michael earned an Associate’s Degree in Professional Aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, in Norfolk, Virginia.
Michael met Angela (Reeves) of Chicago while both were stationed in Virginia Beach, Virginia. At the time he was going through the initiation process for becoming a Chief Petty Officer, and Angela was asked to make an entry in his book. The two were married on February 5, 1987, and together they built a family.
Over the span of three decades, Michael’s commitment to family and the U.S. Navy meant long periods of time deployed at sea while his family remained anchored in Virginia Beach, Virginia. But he forged ahead, and after 30 years of faithful and honorable service, CW04 Michael Waters retired from the U.S. Navy on September 1, 2004.
It was at this point that the next chapter in Michael’s life was able to truly take flight. He was a member of the Tidewater Soaring Society and Tabernacle Baptist Church Ministries. He also regularly attended the local movie theatres to enjoy the popcorn and latest blockbuster films.
By the summer of 2016, Michael and Angela had relocated to Jacksonville, Florida. Michael worked as a senior logistics analyst for CACI at Naval Station Mayport. He also joined the North Florida Soaring Society and logged hundreds of hours piloting his glider.
Michael Waters was called home by his heavenly father on Saturday, April 16, 2022. He was preceded in death by his mother.
Michael is survived by his wife of 35 years and two daughters TraLanenia (Reeves) and Whitney. Also left to cherish his memory is his father, two sisters and their families; Darnell Chase (Annette) and Terrance Ransfer (Felecia) along with his two nephews.
Michael will be missed by his vast extended family, whom he loved and treasured; as well as a considerable network of friends and co-workers that grew to know him as Mike, Sugar Mike, and Shippy during his 66 years of life.
A live stream of the service and visitation will be available for guests unable to attend in person. The link can be accessed via Blanding Blvd Baptist Church website or YouTube channel.