Michael Lewis Rice, born January 7, 1943 in Ann Arbor Michigan; passed away July 16, 2022, at home in Mayhill New Mexico. He and his wife Eileen Lynn Rice celebrated 61 years of marriage on July 7, 2022. They were born in the same hospital 35 days apart.
Michael is survived by his wife Lynn, his brother Daniel Rice and Dan's wife Karen of Raleigh North Carolina, and his sister Helen Rice Brownell and her husband Gary of Walla Walla Washington.
After growing up in Ann Arbor, Mike & Lynn spent 20 years in the south, 15 years in Alaska, and then more than 20 years in New Mexico. Michael built his first telescope as a child, had a recording studio in high school, built a Christian Eagle II biplane, and took Best Metal Float Plane at the Experimental Aircraft Association AirVenture in 1997 for a restored Bird Dog Cessna 305A forward air controller. Most recently he built an Experimental Carbon Cub aircraft. He was an amateur radio operator and held an FCC First Class Radiotelephone license as well. He retired from the University of Alaska Fairbanks as Vice Chancellor in 1998, having had a long academic career. Then he created New Mexico Skies, a world-class observatory system with a location in Australia as well. He will be remembered as being willing to help and give credit to others, share his vast knowledge, and draw out the best in others. Michael was a Life Member of the Experimental Aviation Association (#78836).
In remembrance of Mike, charitable donations can be made to the EAA Aviation Foundation. Online donations can be made by going to: https://www.eaa.org/eaa/support-eaa/give, or checks can be mailed to EAA Aviation Foundation, 3000 Poberezny Road, Oshkosh WI 54902-8900
The Rice family has entrusted their loved one to the care of PCS Direct Cremation Service to direct services.
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