SHEFFIELD, Vt. – Michael Patrick Hearne, 67, of Sheffield, Vt., passed away at his home Friday, July 23, 2021, after a short but courageous battle with pancreatic cancer.
Mike was born in Bellows Falls, Vt., July 9, 1954, to Lawrence and Reba (Noyes) Hearne. He worked construction, highway crew for town municipalities, and for the state of Vermont Agency of Transportation in Lyndonville. During winter construction layoffs, he groomed trails at Bromley and Burke mountains. One of Mike’s proudest moments was graduating from Lyndon Institute as an adult learner while also working the winter schedule with the AOT. Mike retired in 2016, after which he would often stop and visit with the friends that he had made at AOT. His friendly demeanor and ability to converse with anyone earned him many friends throughout his life.
On Sept. 10, 1994, Mike married the love of his life, Audrey Switser. They enjoyed 25 years together camping, ATVing, NASCAR races with friends. Mike and Audrey made many new friends while doing these things and often even coworkers would become lifelong friends. They enjoyed motorcycle rides and holiday gatherings with family and friends. When they first met, Audrey would travel to Bromley Mountain to ride in the groomer with Mike. They also enjoyed bluegrass festivals and camping at Tree Corners. Every year on their anniversary they chose a destination vacation including Niagara Falls, Nova Scotia, Mount Washington, and Harts Turkey Farm Restaurant. The coast of Maine was their favorite destination. Easter was a special holiday for them. They spent many hours and a lot of love preparing the perfect Easter egg hunt for the family children at their home. Mike took great pride in his and Audrey’s accomplishments, especially those things they acquired from their hard labors.
In his younger years, Mike and mom went on many adventures together. They belonged to Hawk’s Mountain Ridge Runners Snowmobile Club and would often be on the trails in the winter. During the summer, they traded their adventure to deep-sea fishing at Hampton Beach and spent many Saturdays at the ocean.
Mike spent many years helping his grandfather on the farm. He had the ability to fix anything. There began his love of machines. He would spend days at Lake Champlain fishing with his grandfather and Dusty Sr. Mike has always loved motorcycles and riding. In his youth, Dusty Sr. was his riding partner. In later years, it was Audrey who accompanied him cruising and enjoying Vermont’s landscape and wildlife. Hunting, camping, and cruising the VAST trails in the side by side, as well as stock car and NASCAR racing, were also on Mike’s list of activities he enjoyed. September brought camping at Loudon to watch his favorite driver, #8 Dale Jr. Time in the summer was also spent at local fairs watching truck and pony pulling. Above all, family was a priority for Mike. He loved to talk with friends and family, often telling stories that were sure to receive a reaction from them. He attended dance recitals, ball games, and any events involving his family.
Mike was predeceased by his wife Audrey in 2019; his parents Reba and Lawrence; and his brother-in-law Stephen Switser.
Survivors include his three sisters Sheila Gordon (Dustin Sr.), Sharon Hearne, and Melissa Severino; his daughter Nicholle Blanchard (Chris); nephews Dustin Jr. (Stacy) and children Thomas and Katrina; Kody (Brianna); nieces Tammy (Rob) and children his namesake Michael and Tyler; Kaila (Chris) and children Conner, Hailey and William; a special aunt Betty Klein (John); and many cousins.
Survivors from Audrey’s family include sisters-in-law Jennie Dion (Wayne), Regina, Sally, and Carrie Switser; brother-in-law Elvin (Michelle) Switser II; nephews David, Howie (Tanya) and children, Dilyn (Meagan)and children Thomas and Peighton, Ariel (Jeff); Reg (Angela) and children Jacob, Sheldon, Alyzah, Nicole, Reggie, and Jason; Ben (Trisha); nieces Stephanie (Greg) and children Shelbie and Whitney; Michelle and children Brenna and Jake; Crystal (Danny) and children Stephen and Zachary; and Christine-Rae.
He is also survived by his godchildren Ashley Ann Deuso and Dilyn Switser.
Mike is also survived by his partner of one and a half years Darlene Tanner-Simpson and her children Andrew (Kristen) Simpson and children Haley, Riley, and Bentley; Kelly Lafleur (Jamie) and children Domanic, Destany, Nevaeh, Wyette, and Dezera; and Darlene’s mother Joanne Tanner. Mike and Darlene enjoyed long Sunday rides, eating at favorite restaurants, and stopping for ice cream. They also shared camping at Will-O-Woods, visiting with friends and family, riding the side by side, and stock car racing. Mike liked spending time with Darlene’s children and grandchildren at birthday celebrations and often stopping in unannounced for hugs.
Visitation will take place Friday, Aug. 6, 2021, from 6-8 p.m., at Guibord-Pearsons Funeral Home on 15 Main Street in Lyndonville, Vt. The funeral service, officiated by Reverend Ann Hockridge, will be held Saturday, Aug. 7, 2021 at 3 p.m. at the Sheffield Federated Church, 130 Berry Hill Rd, Sheffield, Vt. Burial will be immediately following at William Dexter Cemetery in Sheffield, Vt.
Donations in Mike’s name can be made to Vermont Children’s Theater, 2283 Darling Hill Road, Lyndonville, VT 05851.
Memories and condolences may be shared with the family online at www.guibordfh.com.