A Heavy Heart :: In Memory of Mike

Today my cousin Mike lost his battle with cancer.  Mike spent his life working on the family dairy farm.  The life of a dairy farmer isn’t an easy one.  Imagine milking cows every single day at 4:30 am and then again at 4:30 pm.  In between milking times, the day is filled with farm chores.  This was Mike’s life and he loved it.  The small amount of free time that Mike had was spent at church or on rare occasion, enjoying a game of golf.

Mike Ahalt


Mike’s father and my grandfather were brothers.  My grandfather grew up on the farm and my dad spent every second that he could here.  After Mike’s father died, he took over the operation of the farm.  As children, my brother and I loved to visit and would spent a week during the summer as often as we could.  Mike took us to movies, putt-putt, and spent countless hours playing with us.  As you can imagine, we adored him.

Visits to the farm became infrequent after I grew up, but each one that I had was always a pleasure.  In the spring of 2012 we had a nice visit.  On that visit, Mr. SP climbed one of Mike’s silos to capture the beauty of the farm.

Ahalt FarmAhalt Farm


Ahalt Farm


Can you see Mr. SP at the top of the silo?  I never would have the nerve to climb one of these!

Ahalt Farm


I’m all dressed up on this visit because we’d been to a birthday party before going out to the farm.  Here Mike shows Mama and me his milking parlor.

Ahalt Milking Parlor


Mike and Mama

Mike Ahalt


Cancer has not been kind to our family.  Mike’s brother and father died from it, as did my dad.

The world lost a good man today.  Mike will be sorely missed by our family.


  1. Oh Paula, I am so sorry and will be praying for you and your family! Hold on to those precious memories…
    (gorgeous farm!)

  2. My condolences to you and your family on your loss. Thank you for sharing these memories and photos. The farm looks like a beautiful place and I’m sure Mike will be missed by many. My God hold you and keep you and help you to heal from this terrible loss.

  3. Great pictures Paula. I’m sorry for your loss. Mike looked like he enjoyed his job. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. – Bev

  4. I’m so very sorry for you and your family. He was far too young!

    What a beautiful farm. It’s obvious it was tended to with love.

  5. Thank-you for sharing these pictures and your memories of Mike. I can tell he was a good worker and caring member of the family. Now I miss him too.

  6. Oh, I’m so terribly sorry for your loss. I’m glad that you have great memories with Mike. What a beautiful farm he had. God bless you and your family.

  7. Paula,
    I am so sorry to hear about your loss. You have some wonderful pictures and have created beautiful lifetime memories of your cousin. May God hold you and your mom in the palm of His hand.

  8. I’m so sorry to hear about your cousin’s death as well as your dad, brother-in-law and father-in-law from what I believe is the plague of the 21st Century. I have also known so many people who had cancer and either died or won the battle. I had to smile when I read your comment about milking cows. When we first moved to the country, I thought I’d really get into homesteading and we’d buy some cows and/or goats, and I’d milk them and make cheese. But, I’m not an early morning person and when I heard what was required, well, that goal was flushed …. or at least tabled for a while.

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