Michael Anthony Russo, 53, passed away due to heart complications. Mike was a beloved son, brother, uncle, cousin, nephew and friend to many.
Mike was born in Ridgewood, NY, then spent his formative years in Monroe and much of his adult life in and around Fairfield County. Mike enjoyed the last six years living in Texas, but was excited by the idea of returning “home” to Connecticut to live closer to family again.
Mike was funny, kind and loving as a manner of being. He had a great laugh, a quick wit and humility- he was never one to laugh at others’ expense. Mike’s sensitivity to the feelings of others may have been the result of some of his own challenges. Mike endured a multitude of medical procedures throughout his life, from infancy to adulthood. He understood, through experience, that struggle was a part of life, but not all of it.
He had many friends and was very active in his school and community. Mike attended Monroe Public Schools and participated in Band, Marching Band, Jazz Band and school theater productions. In his younger years, Mike served as an altar boy at St. Jude’s Church and was a Boy Scout.
Mike loved baseball. He loyally followed the Mets, played little league as a kid, and as an adult worked as a camera operator for the Bridgeport Bluefish baseball organization.
Mike loved music and was very musical. He was a very skilled drummer/percussionist and also taught himself, effectively, to play guitar and piano. Outside of school organized Band, Mike was part of numerous groups and loved many styles of music. A highlight for Mike was being a drummer in an excellent high school band with friends called The Return that performed at school events and parties. He continued to perform into his 20’s with bands The Peace Trust, Cactus Farm and others.
Mike also loved going to concerts- especially to see and hear the Grateful Dead. In general, music was always a very important part of Mike’s life and he loved to experience it with others.
Professionally, Mike was a very skilled and active journalist/writer. He was a 2002 graduate of Housatonic Community College with an associate degree in liberal arts and journalism. As a student, he was the managing editor of the college newspaper, Horizons, and completed an internship as a staff writer for the Connecticut Post. He was awarded the Post Publishing Prize for Outstanding Achievement and the Connecticut Cooperative Education Association Student of the Year Award for Journalism at graduation in 2002.
From there, Mike wrote professionally for many newspapers, covering many towns in Connecticut including the Chronicle, Voices, North Haven Citizen, the Meriden-Record Journal, the Valley Independent Sentinel, St. John’s Episcopal Church, and more. He also acted as a multimedia reporter for the Danbury News-Times and a camera operator at WTNH.
Most importantly, Mike was and will always be remembered as a beautiful human being and a sweet soul. Most people that knew him recall his kindness, his humor and his genuine good nature. Mike truly lived a life of many great experiences, with many family and friends that loved him, and he contributed his wonderful skills and loving ways to make the world a much better place.
We love you and will miss you incredibly. We will never forget you and the important lessons you taught us all!! Thank you Mike, we love you forever!!!
A memorial service for Mike will be held on Saturday, October 28 at 10:30 at St. Cecilia’s Church, 1184 Newfield Ave, in Stamford.