On Wednesday, April 28, 2021 Michael (Mike) Dean Wilder, loving son, brother, uncle and friend passed away suddenly from cardiac arrest at age 62. Mike was of the Christian faith, and is now reunited with his mother, whom he loved more than anything.
Mike was born on December 20, 1958 in Morristown, TN to Dean and Nell Wilder. Growing up, Mike was a natural athlete in any sport he pursued. In high school Mike was a two-sport athlete and excelled in both football and basketball. A tragic fall in 1977, while on his high school senior graduation trip, left Mike a paraplegic. Regardless of his handicap, Mike was always enjoyable to be around. He didn’t complain or feel sorry for himself. He would often be heard saying things like, “It’s a great day to be alive,” or “It’s all good,” or “I’m so blessed, I can’t complain.” It was his positive attitude that carried him through the remainder of his life. He had a big heart and cared more about others than he did himself.
All his life Mike had an endless passion for dogs. He transformed his love of dogs into a way of life after his accident and began raising dogs. He was known as a legend in certain dog breed circles. His expertise has been highly sought after through the years, leading him to develop many great friends and acquaintances throughout the United States. He also loved to play cards, and he loved to learn. He believed he was never too old to learn something new. He was quick witted, with an infectious smile and striking blue eyes. He will be greatly missed.
Mike was preceded in death by his mother, Iva Nell Davis Wilder, his brother, Mark Oliver Wilder, and life-long family friend, Kenneth Jennings. He is survived by his father, Emanuel Dean Wilder, nieces Corina Nicole Wilder and Hannah Rose Colegrove, Aunt Mickie Davis Matthews, several special cousins and many great friends.
Visitation with his family and friends will be held at Stetzer-Bales Funeral Home on Thursday, May 20, 2021 from 5pm to 7pm. A memorial service will be held at 7pm with Larry Shropshire officiating. There will be an opportunity for anyone to speak who would like to share something about Mike.
Arrangements by Stetzer-Bales Funeral Home.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Michael Dean Wilder, please visit our floral store.