Blansett, Michael Obit

Michael Elwood Blansett

October 20, 1949 - May 10, 2017

Michael Elwood Blansett, 67, passed away peacefully on May 10, 2017, under the watchful eyes of the best nursing staff in the universe at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Plano, Texas. He was born to Elwood and Billie Blansett in Harrisburg, Arkansas on October 20, 1949 and grew up wherever his father's military service took them around the world. In 1967, his family moved to Plano, and he was a resident of the area ever since. He served in the U.S. Army from 1969-1971, with tours of duty in Germany and Vietnam. Shortly afterward, he met Karen Day, and they were inseparable from that point on. They were married in her hometown of Allen, Texas on May 14, 1977.                                 

Mike is survived by his wife of almost 40 years, Karen of The Colony, Texas, sons, Ryan of The Colony and Matthew of Dallas and grandson, Gavin Blansett of Euless. He also leaves behind his mother, Billie Blansett, sister, Janice Atkins and brother, James Blansett, all of Plano, along with brother, Bobby Blansett and his wife Deborah of Dallas, as well as half-brother, Jerry Wayne Blansett and wife Carol of West Memphis, Arkansas. He will also be missed by the many cousins, nieces and nephews, who held a special place in his heart. He was preceded in death by his father, Elwood Blansett, his beloved shih tzu, Oreo and his other canine companions, Smokie and Pogo.

Mike initially began working with computers in the Army when the industry was in its infancy and continued to do so as a civilian. He joined IBM in 1974 and was continuously employed there in a variety of roles until his passing. Over his 43-year tenure, he got to see many sides of the company, from hardware to software to marketing and beyond, and he formed many lasting relationships. To the end, he was a dedicated employee who even made calls from his hospital bed to ensure that his customers were taken care of.

Outside of work, his passions were cars, racing, and generally anything fast or high performance. He loved the challenge of diagnosing mechanical issues with vintage engines as well as finding ways to squeeze more performance and drivability from them. He could diagnose and fix just about any automotive problem, despite the fact that he never made his living as a mechanic. He was partial to the muscle cars of the 60s and 70s and had more detailed knowledge of engine specifications and body style changes than you can imagine. He was a proud member of the Dallas Area Pontiac Association for many years and loved to pass his knowledge on to others.

Mike was also known for his dry sense of humor, which wasn't always understood, but if you did you were endlessly entertained. He was kind, generous and a friend to everyone, always putting others before himself and lending a helping hand whenever he could. A dedicated “dogfather,” he doted on Oreo and didn't hesitate to take her through the drive-thru at KFC for chicken nuggets whenever she wanted. Above all, he loved his family and would do anything he could for them. He will be missed greatly by family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, and many others he had the good fortune to cross paths with over the years.

Over the past eight months he acquired another "family" in his oncology team. He adored and trusted Dr. Thuy Le and her staff who did everything possible to cure his lymphoma. He also got to know the nursing and support staff of 6C at Texas Health Presbyterian Plano quite well and considered them friends as well as caregivers. He knew everyone's names and many details of their lives and he looked forward to opportunities to chat with them. Especially over the last few weeks, there cannot be enough said about their skill, dedication, and compassion, as they were truly there for us in every sense of the word at all times.

Mike was a huge animal lover of both the domestic and wild varieties. If you wish to make charity contributions in his name, I'm sure he would appreciate your support of any organization that benefits animal welfare. Alternatively, resources directed toward lymphoma research and treatment could help eventually eradicate this devastating disease.

A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m., Sunday, May 21, 2017 at Turrentine-Jackson-Morrow Funeral Home in Allen, Texas.  We hope Mike's memorial service will be a celebration of his life rather than a mourning of his passing, so please feel free to dress cheerfully, laugh, reminisce about the fun times, and share the happy memories you have of him.

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I just heard about Mike and am deeply saddened. Mike was a pleasure to know and work with. My sympathies go out to his family. Tony McAvoy, August 2, 2017 I just saw Mike's obituary and it took my breath away. Mike was the best friend I have ever had. My deepest sympathy to Karen, Matt, Ryan, Mrs. Blansett, Jim, Janice, and Bobby. Ken Simmons, June 28, 2017 Mike Blansett the Duty Manager Phone Headset on and a fix of the hair Smell of fresh coffee soon fills the air Silence disturbed by the ring of the phone Its answered with pleasantries no sign of a moan How may I help you? The question is asked. No thought of resistance, to help is the task. Conversation is exchanged, and empathy passed Let me see what I can do – I'll action and fast! With a couple of calls, a specialist is found, The friendship and respect is truly profound. A click and then chatter the client is connected Working together and the fault soon corrected The client is happy and Mike does his checks With Mike working now, we will soon clear the decks Any problems just call me, Mike explains to his client His friendship, experience, just makes him a giant! To work with this friend was to be such a pleasure His care and compassion felt in no equal measure Mike will be missed by the hearts that he touched Gone but not forgotten we'll miss you so much! RIP Mike – God Bless Neale Francis – colleague and proud to say friend! Neale Francis, May 21, 2017 Mike will truly be missed, his dedication to IBM's Clients, always drove a positive experience anytime Mike was engaged. He demonstrated true commitment, honesty and straight talk when working client events. His style and approach positioned IBM to win over many clients, often in very stressful situation. Mike's technical experience, good nature and love of people had a major impact on his career and the many colleagues, clients and friends he made over the years. IBM Remote Technical Support is grateful for Mike's many years of service and his contributions to IBM Means Service. Warren Dance Sr, May 21, 2017 I will miss you so very much! Behave yourself up there ! ;) Nikita Barnett. (niki), May 21, 2017 I am so sorry to hear of Mike's passing and our thoughts and prayers go out to you Karen and your family at this most difficult time. Such a loss of a wonderful husband, father and friend. No matter what the situation was at work Mike always put the client first and always has a smile on his face. Rest in peace Mike. Gary Wsocki, May 21, 2017 As a somewhat short time DAPA member I didn't get to spend as much time with Mike as I wanted to. But the short time was such a blessing to me. Mike you will be missed. Rick Thiessen, May 18, 2017 Our hearts and Prayers are with You Karen and the boys. He will be missed Russ and Renee, May 16, 2017 Matt, very sorry to hear the loss of your father Robyn and I were very saddened when Zach let us know. Our prayers are with you and family. Charles & Robyn Charles & Robyn Callaway, May 16, 2017 I'm so sorry that Mike has had to leave us. Every time we got together, at some point the conversation would invariably turn to a deep and thoughtful discussion of the "how" and "why" behind some process or observed phenomenon, usually involving internal combustion. It wasn't enough for Mike to just know that a thing was, he wanted to understand WHY it was, and that had to make sense. He was a joy to be around, always willing to help a friend, and he will be missed. Robert and Laura Garrett, May 16, 2017 I am so sorry about Mike. I didn't know him but knew his little sister, Janice. Please know that your family is in my thoughts and prayers. Denice Burnside Webb, May 16, 2017