Michael Stewart Coutts
Michael was born the third of four children and the last of three boys on January 14, 1983, in the city of Oshawa, Ontario, Canada, to Hugh Coutts and Anna Coutts.
He was raised in a loving home in Newcastle, Ontario, with his older brothers Jeremiah and Paul and his little sister Brenda.
Michael attended public school in Orono, Ontario, and Clark High School on the 115 Highway two kilometers north of home. Michael graduated from high school in the year 2000 and entered the workforce.
Michael always had a love for baking, even as a young man. An oft-repeated recipe was his favourite Frozen Key Lime Pie. Later, as a single fella he had to learn to fend for himself and he became an excellent cook. There wasn't anything he wouldn't try his hand at and you didn't have to worry about the quality of a meal he put together.
Michael also had a love of reading and learning about world history and world wars. He travelled by himself to New England as well as Merry Olde England to visit historical sites he had read about.
Eventually, Michael chose to enroll at Fairview College in Fairview, Alberta, to train as a Harley-Davidson mechanic. He attended from March to June 2004 and graduated from the program. Michael returned to Ontario and was employed by Mackie Harley-Davidson in Oshawa from 2004 to 2005.
After he left Mackie, Michael sought more education. Choosing local this time, he registered for a program at Centennial College in Toronto for motorcycle mechanics graduating in February 2006.
Michael had another stint working briefly for a Harley dealer in Toronto, Ontario, but gave that up to come west in October 2007. He took a job first at Heritage Harley-Davidson, a dealership in Edmonton, Alberta, and then for another Harley dealer in Gasoline Alley near Red Deer. All the time he was looking for a place he could call his own.
When Michael came west, he first moved in with his brother Paul who was attending school and married with one child, Michael’s niece Ana. While Paul was studying away, Michael would visit with Paul’s wife Ang and it was through these times that Michael was able to not just develop a relationship with his sister-in-law but to also endear himself to her and they became great friends. As time passed, more nieces came along, Hazel (2009), Ruby (2012), Suzie (2015), and Paulina (2017), and Michael came to love each one of them. Uncle Mike’s Christmas tradition was to bring each of his nieces a new dress for them to wear to church; there are few mid-thirties single men that would go out of their way to buy dresses for 5 little girls and then make a game out of presenting them one at a time. The love those little girls have for their Uncle Mike is undying and mutual.
He bought “The Little House on the Prairie” in March 2010 near Rimbey, Alberta. Michael quietly went about his business fending for himself and proving to the world that he was making it on his own without any fanfare. His intelligence, industriousness, and friendly disposition won people over everywhere he went as attested to by the many friends he has made. One past-time he really enjoyed was getting together with his buddies and blasting away at targets in the backyard or on a range. Two hundred rounds was nothing to him as he had his own reloading equipment for every caliber of gun he owned.
Ever wary of the risks of working for the man, Michael realized that being a motorcycle mechanic while working for someone else was not going to pay the bills. So he decided to get his Class 1 driver’s licence and went to work in the oil patch hauling fracking sand. Some of the companies he worked for were: Canyon, Sanjel, and Step. When those opportunities dried up, he took work with some third-party haulers. Most often when speaking with his mom and dad and his siblings, Michael would be in Fox River, Alberta, or some other place up that way as that seemed to be where the majority of his work took him. Once, in 2018, he was assigned to take a load into Fort MacLeod, Alberta near Lethbridge where Paul & Ang reside with their girls. As he was passing through Lethbridge, he stopped in to visit and spend the night which made us all very happy.
It was also in 2018 that he figured his years hauling in the oil patch were getting short as being away from home was crowding his social life. So Michael made his move and set up his own bike repair and modification shop. He had already had the barn built on the property in 2016 with the help of his dad and uncle, Brendan Ross. As a shrewd money manager, Michael carefully and purposefully began buying tools and equipment for his shop that would help him be a good service provider. He called his business “Hot Heads Cycle” and set up his own website being careful to copyright the important details. Michael made effective use of the time on his hands to read and educate himself on the ins and outs of good business management and he incorporated his business to protect himself and his business from creditors and especially the taxman. He slowly built up his clientele, earning his business by his reputation for hard work and quality service at reasonable fees.
Though his time here was cut short, he was loved by many and many loved him. He will be sorely missed and held in our hearts forever.
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