RAVENNA, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Michael “Mike” W. Raridon, 63, of Ravenna, Ohio, passed away peacefully at the Cleveland Clinic on Wednesday, May 1, 2019, from complications following a bilateral lung transplant.
Mike was born in Iowa City, Iowa, on November 14, 1955, to parents Wade and Rosemary (Jenkins) Raridon.
He grew up in Youngstown, Ohio and attended Chaney High School where he was active in the tour choir, cross country track team and performed the lead roles in several of the school’s spring musicals.
He was a two year member of the National Honor Society, earned a National Merit Scholarship his senior year and was salutatorian of his graduating class in 1974.
Mike began his formal education at Oberlin College; he did his post-graduate studies and earned his juris doctorate from Washington University in St. Louis.
Upon receiving his license to practice, he moved to Rockford, Illinois, where he began a successful family law career which lasted almost 40 years, until he was forced to retire due to his illness. Mike dedicated his professional life to serving others, in particular and most recently, as advocate for hundreds of children who became caught in the legal processes of divorce and/or guardianship cases each year.
Mike was a natural performer and loved sharing jokes, stories and his musical talents with others. Music was always a part of his life and he was not only an accomplished singer but he also played guitar, banjo, piano and violin. True to his Scots-Irish heritage he formed several Irish music groups with colleagues and friends in the Rockford area – the beautiful sounds of Casey’s Fancy will live long in the hearts and memories of their many fans. Mike was fortunate to have been able to visit Ireland and experience the music, scenery and of course, the pubs with his son before he became ill.
Mike is survived by his best friend and caregiver, Denise Smith of Ravenna; parents, Wade and Rosemary Raridon of Youngstown, Ohio; son, Andrew (Sarah) of Valparaiso, Indiana; granddaughters, Ruth and Wren Raridon; sister, Geri Socciarelli (Michael) of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio; brother, Tim Raridon of Girard, Ohio; niece, Christi Nicula (Mike); nephews, Anthony Socciarelli of Tampa, Florida and Ed Socciarelli (Holly) of Sarver, Pennsylvania; two great-nieces, Andrew’s mother, Rita Rarido of Rockford, Illinois and many aunts, uncles, cousins and dear friends.
The family would like to express their heartfelt thanks to Dr. Alex Bribiesco and his amazing transplant team; nurse practitioner, Angela and the many doctors, nurses, technicians and staff of the ICU J55 at Cleveland Clinic who cared for Mike during this journey. We will be forever grateful for your valiant efforts to give him a second chance at life and we will never forget the kindness and support you have shown us.
In accordance with Mike’s wishes, cremation has taken place and there will be no calling hours or services.
Material tributes may be sent to Cleveland Clinic’s Lung Transplant Program, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH, 44195.
Funeral arrangements handled by Lane Family Funeral Homes.
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A television tribute will air Monday, May 13 at the following approximate times: 12:25 p.m. WKBN, 6:58 p.m. on MyYTV and 10:37 p.m. FOX plus two additional spots throughout the day.