Michael Ray Whitney, 77
Stoughton, Wisconsin/Sun Lakes, Arizona Michael Ray Whitney of Stoughton, Wisconsin/Sun Lakes, Arizona, journeyed to his heavenly home on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019.
Mike was born Dec. 30, 1941 in Mankato, the son of George and Doris Whitney, of Delavan.
He graduated from Delavan High School in 1959 and spent the next four years as a drummer in the Marine Drum and Bugle Team based in Hawaii and touring the Far East and Australia. He worked his way through college by performing in night clubs in Minneapolis and graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1967 with a music major. While in college, he married a fellow drummer, Carol DeGiovanni, in 1965. They had three daughters, Christine, April, and Kimberly. In 1972 Mike was selected by the Hollywood USO for a tour of Vietnam and Thailand to entertain the troops. His marriage ended in 1975, and Mike entered the insurance business, became a Division Manager for Physicians Mutual and relocated to Madison, Wisconsin, where he served for 16 years before becoming an independent financial advisor in Madison. He became civically active as President of the Optimist Club of Madison and was instrumental in forming five new Optimist Clubs. He also became a Free and Accepted Mason where he served as Master of Madison Lodge #5 and Thrice Potent Master of the Scottish Rite. In 1983 he married Stella Kleiboer who had three children: Rodney, Jason, and Heather. They lived in Stoughton until 2001 when she developed COPD causing them to move to Arizona for her health. Mike became active in Shriners activities. He played drums with the Phoenix Shrine Band and became Director in 2014. He also played in the Shrine Drum & Bugle Corps and served several years as President of the Sun Lakes Shrine Club. Stella died in 2011, and Mike continued to share summers in Wisconsin and winters in Arizona. After a two-year courtship, Mike married Carmelita Olmedo from the Philippines in 2014.
Mike is preceded in death by his parents, George and Doris Whitney; brother, Charles (Bill) Whitney, and wife Stella.
He is survived by wife Carmelita; sisters Beverly Jensen, Edina, and Phyllis Ficken, of Blue Earth; daughters Christine, of Hudson, Florida, April, of Bothell, Washington, Kimberly, of Bloomington; Stepsons Rodney, of Evansville, Wisconsin, Jason, of Edgerton, Wisconsin; Grandchildren Loren, Zurich, Whitney, and Ashley; step-grandchildren Ricky, Andrew, Marisa, Nathan, Hannah, Nick, Khloe, Paul John, Kurt, and Kirby; step-great grandchild, Amara; and his beloved companion Pixie.
Services will be held Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019 at Whitcomb-Lynch Funeral Home, 21 S. Austin Road, Janesville, Wisconsin, 53545. Viewing at 11 a.m., Masonic Service at noon, Internment at 1:30 p.m. at Lutheran Cemetery in Stoughton, Wisconsin.
As Michael requested, a grand celebration of his life will be held at a later date.