YAKIMA - On Wednesday April 15 Michael L. McFarland passed away peacefully at Yakima's Memorial Hospital. Mike was born January 3, 1953 to Floyd and Adeline (Fry) McFarland. He was raised and educated in Cowiche, WA, graduating from Highland High School in 1971 and later graduated from CWU. On October 11, 1975 he married Cindy Brathovde. He was a Jack-of-All-Trades. He built the family home in Cowiche, where he and Cindy raised their two daughters, Andrea and Kristen. Mike was proud to have served in the US Army, as a Yakima Policeman, and as a Yakima Fireman as well as a longtime volunteer for the Cowiche Fire Department.
Mike had an adventurous spirit and had many loves in his life; woodworking, old cars, model trains, hunting and fishing, his Harley, and he cooked like a son of a gun, leaving a pile of dishes in his wake! His greatest love, other than his family and friends, was aviation. At age 16 he earned his private pilot's license under the instruction of Charlie McAllister. He later advanced to become an instructor and charter pilot. He even jumped out of a few planes, but felt flying them was the best. He was passionately involved with the Yakima Air Fair from its inception to its demise. Although he was not able to share adventures with his friends these past few years, he always spoke of the great times they had together.
Mike is survived by his wife, Cindy, and daughters Andrea (Travis) Rogers and Kristen (Josh) Gilliam, his best friend Max aka The Cat, two sisters Margaret (Don) Ziesmer and Marilyn "Jeanne" (Mike) Tolbert, his brother-in-law David (Linda) Payne his special aunts Mary Lyn Fry and Marian Freauf, and numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his mother and father-in-law, Pat and Bill Brathovde.
Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday April 24, 2009 at First Presbyterian Church in Yakima with burial to follow at West Hills Memorial Park. A reception will follow at the American Legion at 1120 N. 34th Avenue in Yakima. In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorials be sent to the McAllister Museum of Aviation.