Below are the notes from my eulogy for my Brother Mike. My goal is to simply give Jake a chance to Honor his Dad and Finish his college. Mike was a giver and those who know the type understand they all too often do not take care of themselves. Mike would have said I don’t need anything, there are people in more need than I. but he is gone. And Jake Needs your support on so many levels. He is a great kid and the apple didn’t fall far from the tree. He would figure out how to make it on his own I am sure. But now as he moves forward without his mentor he needs his Father’s friends and those able to help, Please Help. He would never ask but I will. Mike and Jake have given much. I would ask you to do what you can. The goal is plain and simple. to get Jake through college and to do so debt free. To allow Jake a chance to wrestle and compete in honor of his Dad.
If you are able to help support Jake in any way I ask that you please do so. I simply want Jake to know that the this isn’t charity it the return of the gifts His Father paid forward over the last 35 years.
I’m not sure this is the right place to do this but given all that is going on its all I could come up with as a means of honoring Mike and supporting Jake.
My Cochrane Eulogy
My dear friends we are here to mourn the passing and celebrate the life of My little brother and my best friend Mike Cochrane. Anyone who knows me knows I love to talk in small groups and I hate the podium. It’s hard for me today today but I wouldn’t have it any other way. His way. You just do it. You do what must be done. My son Marcus said to me. Dad stay strong. I said I will. But I have to tell you it's a lot harder to be strong without my brother at my side.
I can't believe it but it is true, Mike is gone from this earth. But his mountain of a legacy lives on. He indeed left his Mark at every turn. He was a Loyal friend for those fortunate to have known him. Mike was a committed father to his son Jake, the most important person in his life. He lit up like the plane landing lights he rigged up on one of his pickup trucks in the black of night. whenever he talked of Jake, proud to no end in Jakes authenticity and achievements but Mike was most proud of the young man Jake had become. It is said nothing greater can be said of a father than that his son is Honorable, just and kind. Mike's legacy lives on. Mike was tough on the outside but he was filled with love on the inside. He was a proud American and a patriot throwback to those days of the Minutemen that proudly stated Don't tread on me. And we all knew he ACTUALLY MEANT IT.
A proud American doesn't begin to describe his passion for this country and her founding principles of hard work and self-reliance. Despite that fierce pride in American values he was a genuinely sweet, understanding and compassionate man under that tough exterior. Mike was always willing to help a friend in need and generous beyond measure. I've heard countless stories over the last few days of his generosity. All
May not know that Mike coached football and wrestling for many year and with kids, one of his great joys, I believe he was a special man, one that truly mentored kids, teaching young men more than how to grapple and tackle. He gave them confidence, teaching them how to be gentlemen and to carry themselves with honor and character. To fight for their convictions and to always be at the ready to give a hand when a hand was needed. That a young man should always hold the door especially for a women. He taught the simple habits of respect. How to say Yes Ma'am and Yes Sir, to understand people and the situation before reacting and to give respect to all that is living.
Mike was not a Saint in the traditional sense he was simply strong, strong in his convictions and his sense of right and wrong, little was left unsaid if he felt that a person or situation was unjust. Mike was a true mans-man. A warrior for those without a voice and ardent supporter of the NRA and the right to live free. Those principles at times cost him. He never backed down. He lived his life on his own terms, giving and loving deeply his friends and family, as well giving of his time and attention to those that needed his love and attention most. Mike was not afraid of failure, he was too busy doing what needed to be done, he never retreated from a tough situation he attacked it. He was a hero, not because he was perfect or that he did something that we could read about in the local paper. He was a hero because he cared for everyone he touched and he never quit. No matter how hard things might have been for Mike at times. Mike never quit and never stopped giving his hand and heart to those that he thought needed it more. Whether or not you actually knew him I must tell you we have lost a wonderful human being, a legendary character and a committed friend. Frankly there are damn few men left like him. I loved this man from my core. I also know those that really knew him. Love him.
I pray my dear brother knew your love and feels it now, that he might look down and see what his friendships have built, a community, a family, one that will be inspired to do the work of a carpenter.
My Brother I pray as we mourn losing you and celebrate your Life. That the rest of your journey be free of pain and full of love and cool sunny days for you to do your eternal work. we know you hated the heat.
I know Mike you are with our Heavenly Father, our Dad the Chief and Uncle Bud and many of your friends and family that have gone before you. I can see you with a Jack and Coke in hand toasting with Tommy, our Dad, Uncle Bud and more. One-day God willing I will see toast with you again on the other side. Until then, God Speed Baby brother. I pray you know that I will always love you. You may have left this earth but you will live on in the hearts of all you have touched. Michael my heart is breaking having lost you. Thank you being my brother and my friend.
Interesting like our father, Mike ultimately choose to take on a carrier of service. Not as a Dr or paramedic, not a COP but as our friend and brother. In these hours of reflection, we try to understand why, why now. And without answers we must hold on to the who. The who he was, and the Mark he left on each of you.
Mike and I talked many times about the mark we made on people and the kids we coach. We called them coaching tattoos. You leave a mark you can be proud of or you don't. Either way the mark stays with those kids and people a life time. I talked to many of you and read the outpouring of comment and tributes. I tried to take each one and fill the gaping hole in my heart like gauze to a wound. My cousin Alex sent me a song took me to my knees at first and then gently filled my aching heart as in swelled with Pride in just how special a man he was. It made me feel close to Mike. I'd like to share a few of the lines from the song. The song Is called Stong.
Before I read some if the lyrics. I want to thank you all for sharing Mike's incredible journey with him, I know he loved and enjoyed the time he shares with you.
He's a twenty year straight get to work on time
He's a love one woman for all his life
He's a shirt off his back give you his last dime
He's a need to move something you can use my truck
He's an overtime worker when the bills pile up
He'll pick you up and won't let you down
Rock solid inside out
Somebody you can trust
Steady as the sun
Ain't nothing gonna knock him off the road he's rollin on
It ain't what he can carry its what he can lift
It's a dirt road lesson talkin to his kids
Bout how to hold your ground and how to live
Like the river rollin
Gonna keep on going
When the road runs out
They gonna keep on talkin about him.
How he was strong
Everybody knows he ain't just tough
My friends now the torch has been passed to you. I pray and I challenge you to take what he gave you and pass it on.
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