Fern Ridge-Tribune News
Sweet Lorane Community News
November 11, 2021
By Pat Edwards
Greetings from Roswell, New Mexico. Two of our daughters, Gloria and Michele, and I just picked up a new puppy that we’re bringing home to Oregon. Grizz will never replace the very special place that Gloria’s Cappy will always hold in our hearts, but he’s opened one of his own already. He’s 9 weeks old and is quietly sleeping beside me in his soft crate in the back seat of the car as we make our way back home. He’s already brightening our world.
The sun is shining and it’s about 60 degrees, but despite our joy over meeting Grizz, we just learned of the passing of one of the strongest, bravest men I have ever known. Michael Matchulat died this morning—Veterans’ Day—after spending the last 6 ½ years battling cancer. Michael grew up in Lorane with his parents and his four sisters. He was the youngest of the 5 siblings and was adored by all.
“Michael not only taught us how to live, he taught us how to die. I was so blessed to be with him, Amber and the Matchulat family this week as we all helped Michael transition to Heaven. I really believe he got to hear God say, “Well done good and faithful servant.”
For the first couple of years of his battle with cancer, Michael shared his journey on the pages of the Lorane Facebook page, and even though he hadn’t been known before by some, his shared experiences pierced the hearts of each of us as he met, and seemingly overcame, each obstacle that the “Big C” presented him.
Later, Michael wrote of not only his experiences with cancer, but of his happier life’s experiences while growing up in Lorane, on the pages of the Groundwaters anthologies. (There are two of his stories included in our soon-to-be published 2021 edition.)
Before he became too ill to finish the project, he asked me to help him put his experiences and writings into a book. All that remained for him to do was to design a cover. I will see that it gets published with the help of his family.
In the meantime, Jim and I send our deep condolences to the Matchulat family. Our hearts are broken. May you rest in peace, Michael.