In Memoriam

Mike "Fuzzy" Major

Mike Major

August 6, 1951 - March 28, 2019

Mike "Fuzzy" Major passed away in March 28, 2019, apparently from an allergic reaction to a bee sting. After the sting occurred, he contacted his sister Donna, a nurse, and explained that he was having trouble breathing. She recognized the seriousness of the situation, and he was rushed to Baylor Plano, where he passed away.

After graduating from RHS, Mike attended Texas A&M for a year. His life subsequently took a series of twists and turns. He was very well read and was a craftsman, especially with stained glass, even being commissioned to create stained glass windows for a church.


Mike "Fuzzy" Major (bottom) with Belt Line Junior High tracksters.

Standing: Keith Kelly, Chris Derrington, John Powell, Bobby Brown, Hank Dubey

Kneeling: Glea Ramey, Eddie Speer, Don Cannon

Like Fuzzy, Keith and Hank are Fallen Eagles.

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04/02/19 10:17 AM #1    

Shannon Burnham (Kirby)

The photo of Fuzzy was from my sister Mardi’s wedding in Chicago. He wowed everyone he met with his enormous smile, sense of humor and joy of life. I’m saddened to know he left this earth. 

04/02/19 02:52 PM #2    

Sherri McCormick

So many memories of my sweet friend.  Fuzzy snuck into my room through the window at Richardson General Hospital with a bottle of wine the night before my wisdom teeth extraction.  When the nurse came into the room, he dove under the bed, and when she left we laughed so hard we cried.  I always wrote his phoney excuses from class for countless "dental appointments," signing as his mother. He called me "mother" from then on.  So grateful for the long, hilarious, sweet phone conversation we had a few months ago.  I am so sorry it was to be our last  

04/02/19 06:36 PM #3    

Jan Alexander

My dear sweet, rebel “Fuzzy”;

It just breaks my heart that he passed so unexpectedly… I was hoping he would find peace in life after having such a stint outside of society, as we know it.  He paid for his stupid, idiotic mistakes and once a free man, I wished him well and to hope he could get on with his life and be a happy, free man. 

If there was one person and only one person, if I were to go to another reunion, it would have been him, I would want to see.  I would have given him the biggest hug possible.   He was a Dentonite along with Cathy Crosby and Frank Cowen, all deceased now and I know they are all together again.  We all hung out together in the early 70’s in Denton as the “bestest” friends ever and we invited our own friends into what became an amalgam of wonderful people.  We worked together and played together.   

He loved to do stained glass and apparently was known for his art.  He loved gardening and so I guess if he had to pass doing what he loved, it was in the garden.  I bet his is thumbing his nose at bees now, saying “WTF”.

He was a devilish angel with the softest, brave heart ever.  We have to count our blessing every day, don’t we? Live here and now.  Peace my friend. 

Love you mucho.

04/03/19 08:41 AM #4    

John Powell

Mike and I grew up 2 streets from each other and we were back and forth between our homes a lot. Mike lived in 3 different homes on Ridgedale. His parents would move away for a year and always come back to same street. I remember so many times when I went over to his house he was playing the Aggie War Hymn and marching in the living room. In college I traveled over to A&M to see him and he came to Rice to visit several times. I had Thanksgiving dinner with him and the "corps". He popped into Houston during final exams his freshman year and I asked why he was not in College Station for exams and he said he had just gotten back from the coast. Said he did not feel like taking final exams. I am thinking it was ninth grade not sure but his love for A&M at the time had us meet one morning before school. I cut out a tomahawk style T on top of his head and a big A on one side of his head and a big M on the other side and we went to class. His hair style disrupted class so much that the teacher made us both go to the office and we were sent home to remove haircut. We went to field house and I cut all his hair to a burr style. Mike was manager on cross country and track and I think it was Sam Duncan that came up with the name Fuzzy because of his new hair cut. Our sophmore year I talked Mike and Don Cannon and another friend from W.T. White into walking to my grandparents 100 miles south of Richardson. It was also close to Mike's grandparents and we talked about going over there to. We left in August and everyday was over 100 degrees. The first day we camped just south of Dallas and the second day in Ennis. Mike and Don's feet were hurting bad so they both put "deep heat" on that night to make them feel better. The next morning after a couple of miles their feet were hurting so bad they called their parents to pick them up. We took several other trips but after college only talked on phone a few times. He was supposed to be at a wedding in Dallas 6 years ago and get together but never heard back from him. Wish I could have seen him again.

04/03/19 08:57 AM #5    

Bob Fleming

I have two distinct memories of Mike from my junior hi days.

My family moved to East Richardson after my sixth grade year, so I left all of my Richardson Heights Elementary School friends, including Mike, behind to attend Richarson Jr. HI (Abrams), not Richardson West.

Mike often was the manager of various athletic teams in jr. hi and, I think, hi school.

One game day, out of the clear blue, Mike showed up at our home court for one of our basketball games in 9th grade.  Our team was quite good - we finished the year at 32 wins and only one loss.

All of us were in the stands watching the 7th and 8th graders play.  Predictably, Mike sat down with us and insisted in engaging the entire team in a discussion on how a team as good as ours had managed to lose that one game.  But particularly me I think, since we were elementary school friends.

At one point, he smiled mischeviously, looked directly at me and said, "Bobby, I heard the point guard cost you the game because he played so poorly."  (and I was forced to admit that a guy named Fleming had indeed cost his team the game)

But Mike didn't stop there.  Our team had a good luck charm - a small green plastic ball we passed around the locker room (for three years) before and after every single game.  While we played our game, Mike snuck into our locker room, searched every locker and every bag, found the green ball, and cut it to ribbons with a knife.  He then left it in a prominent place so that we would be sure to see it when we entered the locker room after the game.

Mike got clean away.  We all knew he had done it, absolutely nobody (teacher, coach, adult or child) had seen a thing.

The word was that Mike had decided to "put a jinx on us" for the upcoming game against Richardson West.

From that time on, every time Mike saw me throughout high school, he would just smile that smile of his.

I planned to confront him about this at the 50th reunion.  It's just as well; Mike got "clean away" again.

Mischief Mike; what a guy.

04/03/19 01:22 PM #6    

Bruce Gadd

I don't post much, but Mike's passing brought back a special memory for me.  We all have experienced his funny antics, pranks and his general hilarious behavior those many years ago.  Mike was also the manager for the football team and for whatever reason he and I developed a fun playful relationship, mostly during practices our senior season.  But what happened at the end of our final game is what shows Mike had a different side as well.  I have never shared this story, not even with my old teammates.  We were winning with one minute and a few seconds to play in the playoff game and we were all thinking ahead to the next round of playoffs and probably on to the state championship.  Then in an instant, I fumbled and they scored and we lost in a matter of seconds.  I stood on the sideline and watched the game end knowing I was responsible for such heartbreak to my teammates, my family and my beloved RHS.  As it ended I squatted on the sidelines, buried my head in my hands and I cried.  Instantly there was an arm around my shoulders and I looked over and Fuzzy was squatting next to me holding on to me.  And he was crying as hard as I was.  And he wasn't crying because we lost the game.  He was crying because his friend was hurting.  Thank you Fuzzy.  You'll be missed.   

04/03/19 02:31 PM #7    

Sherri McCormick

This post is actually from Patti McCormick. DMC.

It's hard to imagine a world without Fuzzy.  He was one of my best friends in high school.  I have such great memories of our long and special friendship. He graduated with my sister Sherri McCormick, but the moment I met him we instantly became friends.  He was my partner in crime 😀 I remember how we used to drive around the circle at Belt Line and Coit for hours at a time.....often stopping the car so we could run and stand inside the circle to wave at everyone driving by.  Many weekends were spent sneaking into the Gemini drive-in. Several of us would hide in Fuzzy's trunk with a bottle of Boone's Farm wine as he would drive thru the entrance. Ultimately we got caught.    Fuzzy and I reconnected several years ago. Our conversations always made me laugh as we recalled so many fun and special times from our past.    I will mis this dear sweet man but his light will shine forever.     .....Patti McCormick....

04/06/19 05:19 PM #8    

David Cordell

While attending Mike's memorial service, I looked at the four large stained glass windows of Jesus behind the altar. In a typically inexplicable pivot, I started thinking of my interactions with Mike, whom I had known since elementary school. Mainly, I thought of his actions as a manager of the RHS Eagles football team when I played. I also thought about Bruce Gadd's post about Mike.

Mike never scored a touchdown. He never made a game saving tackle. He never hit a buzzer-beater jump shot. Still, Mike was an important part of the team. It occurred to me that, as manager, Mike gave me water when I was thirsty. He gave me a towel when I was covered in sweat. He gave me encouragement when I was down.

No, I am not suggesting a Fuzzy-Jesus. But I suspect that I never thanked Mike for his selfless acts.

Perhaps not so coincidentally, I gave a talk at the 40th Reunion Fallen Eagles ceremony in which I revealed that I had hoped to thank Cathi Akin in person at that Reunion for something she said to me at the 30th Reunion that really lifted my spirits. Unfortunately, she passed away two years earlier. I missed my chance.

Mike's passing reminds me of how many people, in this life or beyond, have deserved my appreciation to a far greater extent than I have ever expressed. 

Rest in peace, Fuzzy. You helped me even after you left this earth.



04/10/19 12:50 PM #9    

Shannon Burnham (Kirby)

This is a message from Mardi Burnham, Shannon's sister....I graduated a couple of years after you all did, so Shan has kindly let me log in to her account to share my fond memories of Fuzzy.  It must have been Sophomore year, that he found me or I found him - that part is unclear -  but for a short while he became like a big brother to me.  He had such an intense love of life, always looking for those pixelated edges of the envelope, tho, nothing was ever done with agression or with a mean spirit, yet ALWAYS done in the spirit of adventure and hilarity.  Yes, I was in the trunk with Patti a couple of times, drove Coit circle a few times too (as she mentions above). Fuz could take an ordinary day and make it an event.  I remember a bus trip to Colorado to attend Young Life Camp....why I went, I have no recollection WHATsoever, except it was probably because Fuzzy was going. I have no real memories of the actual Camp experience, but I do remember the long bus ride because of just how FUN that was.  I know Fuz was the schools mascot, but he was also OUR mascot; people rallied around him, sang with him, laughed with him, short sheeted beds with him, panty raided with him.  He had the ability to pull disparate groups together into a cohesive whole.  I think that is what I remember and admire most; his ability to do that.  He was a hell of a guy and I regret that his life was not as fulfilled as he probably would have wanted, but he fulfilled my life for a few years during High School and for a few after that.  As I write this, I realize I have a smile on my face while noting this crazy time, thanks for that Fuzzy, and Rest in Peace dear friend. 



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