Mary Ann “Mike” Cruse
20 March 1941 – 26 October 2020
Mary Ann “Mike” Cruse, age 79, passed away peacefully on 26 October 2020 after a 19-year battle with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). In the last year she took on breast cancer and Guillain-Barré Syndrome and in the end she left this life as she lived it, on her own terms.
She grew up in Brooklyn, New York, and got her moniker from the old Irish “Pat and Mike” jokes; her older sister, Patricia, being Pat. Her father was a musician and he played an impressive studio grand piano which Mike took lessons on and learned to play beautifully. Music, and in particular the piano, would become a constant companion in her life and it brought out her extroverted side.
Mike moved to Florida in her late teens and though contracting tuberculosis and losing her father young, she never lost her positive attitude. That strength of spirit was commented on by those who knew her throughout her life. She went on to work in clinical psychology, nursing management and hospital software installation & training where her positive energy helped others see what they could achieve.
She was a perfectionist with a bent toward organization and knew how she liked things done. She enjoyed knitting, watching murder mysteries and thought that TiVo was the greatest thing since sliced bread. She had wonderful expressions that we still hear in our heads: “speecy-spicey”, “tasty no-nos”, “bump it up to six liters!” and “wrap me like a burrito”. If you know of more, please feel free to add them to her Tribute Wall.
Mary Ann “Mike” was preceded in death by her brother, Bill. She will be sorely missed and is survived by her sister, Patricia Hutt; her three daughters and their spouses: Siobhán & Pekka Toveri, Gillian Cruse & Linda Tills, and Sabrina & Per Madsen; her grandchildren Brendan Nolan, Katie Nolan, Alex Madsen and Christian Madsen; plus many nieces, nephews, grandkitties and a grandpuppy. All of these she loved and touched deeply.
In lieu of flowers, please donate to the AdventHealth Orlando Pulmonary Rehab unit or AdventHealth Winter Park (link below). She worked and received rehabilitation at the Pulmonary Rehab unit, and she volunteered and received treatment at AdventHealth Winter Park, her “home away from home”.
A virtual celebration of Mike’s life is planned for her birthday in March and per her wishes, a party will be held when we can all stand together and raise a glass to her, hopefully next summer.
For Pulmonary Rehab, select “Cardiovascular Care”. The rehab unit is funded through this care group. AdventHealth Winter Park has its own drop-down listing. Please check the box, “I would like to make this donation a tribute” and select “Tribute Type – In Memory Of”. If you would like the family notified of your donation, please check the box, “Notify the following person about my tribute” and enter Gillian Cruse at firstname.lastname@example.org. AdventHealth will not share your specific donation amount.