Michael John Yuzwak, loving husband, devoted father and proud grandfather passed away on Tuesday, August 30, 2022, after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer.
He is survived by his wife of 48 years, Lori (Donnelly) Yuzwak; two daughters, Melissa (George) Martin of Clover, SC and Mara Yuzwak (Shaun Kicak) of Syracuse, NY; and his special grandson, Grant R. Martin. Mike is also survived by his five sisters, Marcia (Bob) Fisher of Alden, NY; Linda (Kenny) Newman of Lancaster, NY; Stephanie (Bob) Oliver of San Angelo, TX; Cindy Slimko of Lancaster, NY; Ann (Dan) Rusin of East Aurora, NY; mother-in-law Shirley Donnelly of Wales Center, NY; sister-in-law Leesa (Trey) Braun of Carlisle, PA as well as several beloved nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Michael and Mary Yuzwak and father-in-law Howard Donnelly.
Mike was born on March 23, 1952, in Buffalo, NY. He was a 1970 graduate of Iroquois High School (Elma, NY) where he played Varsity basketball, ran cross country and set the discus record which was just recently broken. He attended Gannon University prior to joining the New York State Police Academy where he graduated in 1978. Upon completion of the Academy, he was transferred to Syracuse, NY where Mike and Lori lived for 40 years. Mike retired as an Investigator with the New York State Police after serving for over 26 years. Highlights of his career include being at the 1980 Winter Olympics where he worked the hockey game in which Team USA beat Russia as well as being on Americas Most Wanted where he discussed one of his open investigations.
Mike loved to fish and hunt but more than those things, he loved to go shooting. Mike was an expert at silhouette shooting, he collected guns and made his own ammunition. He enjoyed riding motorcycles and working on cars. Mike was always watching the weather and would go out to look at the stars. His dogs Patches and Blaine (Diamond and Bandit) were adored by him. They went on long walks every day and played fetch in the yard. Mike was easy to talk to and enjoyed sharing his knowledge of a variety of topics with everyone that he met.
Mike and Lori recently moved to South Carolina to be closer to their grandson, Grant. He loyally attended soccer and basketball games as well as Grant’s swim meets. He taught Grant how to shoot baskets and BBs. They loved to debate each other on history. Most importantly, Mike passed down to Grant what his grandfather had taught him – to always do your best.
The family would like to especially thank the staff at Atrium Health Pineville for all of the care, support and love that they gave to Mike. During this difficult time came cherished moments with his nurses, many of whom became family to us.
Funeral services will be held at M. L. Ford & Sons Funeral Home in Clover, SC on Saturday, September 3, 2022. Viewing will be from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. immediately followed by a memorial service. Interment will take place at Rock Hill Memorial Gardens.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to pancan.org in support of helping those with pancreatic cancer or to the New York State Police Investigators Association, Troop D, 421 London Rd, Albany, NY 12211 in memory of Inv. Michael Yuzwak.