John Michael Hennes passed away suddenly of a heart ailment on Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020. Per his request, his service will be held on a Friday so that his County boys can enjoy a three-day weekend. Visitation will be from 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24, at St. Mary's Hall in Oxford. Graveside services will be at 11 a.m. Friday, Sept. 25, at Mount Calvary Cemetery in Oxford. Father Robert Cloos will officiate. Friends may meet at St. Mary's Hall in Oxford at 10:45 a.m. to join the procession to the cemetery. Because of COVID-19 concerns and Mike's aversion to formalities, a formal luncheon will not take place.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Walker Johns Childhood Cancer Foundation paypal.me/KellyJohns331 or to the John Michael Hennes memorial fund. Because of the pandemic, the family requests that attendees wear a mask and observe social distancing for the protection of all. The family encourages everyone to wear Hawkeye attire to the visitation. Thank you.
Michael was born Oct. 7, 1960, to Jim and Mary Ann (Thompson) Hennes. He grew up with five siblings, only four of which he is responsible for providing with scars and/or stitches. He graduated from Clear Creek High School in 1979 and started working for Johnson County Secondary Roads Department within days. This would be a job he stuck with until the very end, holding many positions. His job at the county led him to meet his wife Aja, whom he loved for 22 years. He often joked about the fact that he made over a million dollars throughout his employment with the county. What does he have to show for this million dollars, one might ask? Several cars his kids managed to mangle over the years, a supply of booze and cigarettes that could keep a frat house happy for years, but on a more serious note, the beautiful family home that he grew up in and later raised his children in.
Mike became a father for the first time on St. Patrick's Day of 1983. He went on to fulfill his mother's wishes of having six children just as she did. He took pride in teaching his children how to drive (while blasting John Cougar Mellencamp and George Strait cassette tapes), in spite of the fact that his parents did not think he would make it through his early driving years (anyone remember the '73 Cougar, the copper Mustang or the Ford pick-up incident at the ball diamonds?). He also taught his children how to gracefully lose, as he never missed an opportunity to rub in a good win during family game nights. He attended countless of their sporting events, whether it was for a state title or simply to watch them ride the pine. He made the drive. Michael and Aja thoroughly enjoyed listening to old music while dancing around the garage with their beloved kittens. He was well known by many for his one-liners and ability to bring light to any situation with his sense of humor, no matter the cost of appropriateness. Mike was a generous friend and he never met a stranger, except maybe those two guys in Walford.
Michael was welcomed into heaven by his mother, Mary Ann. We're sure she chose him as first to join her, he's rumored to have been the favorite. Also welcoming him at the Pearly Gates are a niece, Hannah; maternal grandparents, Ralph and Myrt Thompson; and paternal grandparents, Raphael and Alberta Hennes.
He is survived by the love of his life, Aja; son, Cody (Beth); daughters, Whitney (Brandon), Chelsey (Craig), Riley and Lillian; son, Anthony; grandchildren, Taylor, Easton, Evan, Savannah, McCoy, Marilee and Henlee; his parents, Jim and Margaret Hennes; sister, Kathy (Randy) Campbell; brothers, Chuck (Kim) Hennes, Terry (Chris) Hennes, Tim (Robin) Hennes and Jim (Jonelle) Hennes; his extended Kurka stepfamily, Randy, Chris, Randy, Paula and families; in-laws, Doug and LaVonne Kahler; brother-in-law, Aaron Kahler; several nieces, nephews and cousins; and too many friends to count.
As hard as it may be Mike would not want us to dwell on his passing, so put on your best Hawkeye hat and half zip hoodie, crack a Miller Lite and give a nod to the sky in honor of our amazing father, husband, brother, uncle, son, friend and Papa H'ee.
Until we meet again.
Let your soul and spirit fly into the mystic.
Online condolences may be sent to Mike's family at www.lensingfuneral.com