A family graveside service for Michael Joseph (“Mike”) Rinewalt, age 73, will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, May 19, 2023, at Sulphur Bluff cemetery, with his son, Keith Dagen, leading the tribute. Honorary pallbearers will be his nieces and nephews. A memorial celebration of his life is planned at a later date.
Mike passed away on May 17, 2023, at his residence in Fairview, Texas, surrounded by his loving family.
He was born December 19, 1949 in Waco, Texas to John Ford Rinewalt and Hortense (Bulmahn) Rinewalt. A lifelong Christian, he was raised in the Baptist faith and later attended the Church of Christ. He graduated from Waco High School in 1968 where he played clarinet in the marching band and excelled in math and science. He studied engineering at Texas A&M University, graduating in 1973. A devoted Aggie sports fan through the years, he loved curling up in his recliner and watching football.
Highlights of his 42-year career as an Industrial Engineer included 13 years with E-Systems, Garland Division in support of the defense intelligence industry and 10 years with General Motors where he was part of a team that converted and expanded the Arlington, Texas plant from car to SUV production.
While at E-Systems, he met his future wife, Sharon (Bassham) Dagen, and they married on October 23, 1982. Together, they raised her two children, whom he loved as his own.
In retirement, Mike was an avid gardener and enjoyed sharing fruits and vegetables with friends and family, but his greatest joy was his role as Pepaw to his four grandchildren. They were the light of his life and he spent countless hours constructing playground equipment and obstacle courses in the backyard they called Pepaw’s Park. He loved watching classic Mickey Mouse cartoons with them, baking brownies, and playing hide and seek. He was the #1 fan at all of their sporting events and spoiled them outrageously – and loved every minute of it.
He is survived by his wife of forty years, Sharon, his son, Keith Dagen and wife Paige of Richardson, TX, and daughter, Jennifer Dagen and husband Michael Francis of Lucas, TX; grandchildren, Chad Martin, Matthew Francis, Julianna Francis, and Nathan Francis; nieces and nephews, Traci Rinewalt Stone of Austin, TX, Ford Rinewalt of San Antonio, TX, Kenneth Freeman of Watauga, TX, David Freeman of Royse City, TX, Kathleen Demuth of Mansfield, TX, Christina Jones of Allen, TX, Stephanie George of Greenwood, AR, Kendra Korthauer of Brenham, TX, Jonathan Ulrich of Grapevine, TX, Susan Heflin of Spring, TX, Jason Ulrich of Garland, TX, and Lucas Ulrich of Garland, TX; numerous great-nieces and nephews; and cousin Lynn Bulmahn of Waco, TX.
Mike is preceded in death by his parents, his older brother, Randall Milton (“Randy”) Rinewalt, and two brothers who died in infancy, John David Rinewalt and Donald Ford Rinewalt.
Many thanks to the wonderful family, friends, and medical team who offered support and encouragement to Mike during his two-year battle with bladder cancer and pulmonary fibrosis.
Arrangements are under the direction of Murray-Orwosky Funeral Home.
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7