We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their incredible kindness, love, and generosity after the tragic accidental death of our beloved Stephen. Your cards, flowers, e-mails, Facebook entries, meals, and donations to our designated memorial funds have given us great comfort. The enormous outpouring from our Rockford community exemplifies the quality of the people who live and work here—this is truly a phenomenal place to live. The frequent visits from Stephen’s friends remind us everyday how much he was loved and how many lives he impacted. God gave us the gift of Stephen in our lives for over 17 years so that he could demonstrate to others the true meaning of giving, acceptance, and love. He now sits at the right hand of our Lord so that he can watch over us in our time of grief and sadness. May God richly bless each of you for the love you have shown us. Jamie, Gerilyn, Brett and the May and Janicki families.
May Stephen May, a 17-year-old Rockford High School (RHS) senior and Belmont resident, died unexpectedly and went to be with his Lord on April 28, 2010. He went to Assumption Catholic Elementary School and was an active member of the parish. In the seventh grade, he began attending Rockford Public Schools. Despite his 5’10” lean frame, he could out-eat any of the players on the football or basketball team. He is described by his many friends as one of the most outgoing, funniest, young men they have ever met. He loved playing sports and was on the varsity football, basketball and track teams. He enjoyed working with young children, including coaching, mentoring, serving as a positive role model, and teaching children’s liturgy every Sunday at Assumption parish. His favorite hobby was fishing, and he entered numerous contests (recently staying up all night trying to win a trolling motor). Stephen was an excellent student and planned to attend Michigan State University in the fall to study business. His brother, Brett, describes Stephen as a person who always put others ahead of himself. He made his grocery list according to what his friends ate. Many RHS seniors viewed the May home as their second home where they were always welcomed. Stephen was an upbeat person who enjoyed a great practical joke; his teammates say he embarrassed them, but they enjoyed it. At an initial football retreat with dads and sons, Stephen stood in front of all and said how much he loved his family; he always put them first. With a quirky grin, like a Cheshire cat, Stephen lit up the room. The RHS school community mourns the loss. In the words of Stephen’s father, “Celebrate life. It is something to be valued and cherished.” Stephen was always kind, loving, humorous and thankful, and will be lovingly missed by his parents, Jamie and Gerilyn (nee Janicki) May; brother, Brett; grandparents, Steve “Dziadji” and Helen “Bushi” Janicki of Belmont, Mrs. Marilyn May of Sutton Bay; aunts and uncles, Karen and Art Swartz, Pat and Dick Wiebe, Barbara and Mark Jackson, Mary “Joje” and Bob Wismer, Julie and Jeff Forbes, Stephanie and Stuart Cohen, Greg May and Linda Marie Stevens, Mike and Cheri May; many cousins. He was preceded […]