Mike passed into the Lord's care on Saturday, May 29th, 2021.
He was born on November 25, 1949, in Seattle, Washington. A few years later, Mike’s mother (Betty Pinch) moved to Spokane with her two sons Mark and Mike. The three were a small but strong family all the way through to Mike’s graduation from Central Valley High School in 1968.
Throughout school, Mike was an active participant on tennis, football, and ski racing teams. Betty was always close by, never missing his match, game, or ski race. During his senior year of high school, he was editor of the Central Valley newspaper.
After spending a winter as a ski instructor in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Mike attended Western Washington University where he graduated with degrees in journalism and business. As the editor of the Western Washington University newspaper, he prided himself on delivering engaging truthful reporting.
Upon Mike’s graduation from Western, he moved to Tacoma, Washington. He worked for both 7-Eleven and Kmart gaining valuable retail experience in preparation for opening his own store. The store he built and opened became known as Pinch’s Deli Market and it was an icon in Tacoma for many years. Mike's dad, Harry “Mac” Pinch, was instrumental in helping him start his store, as well as his brother-in-law Ottie Ladd.
The next phase of Mike's life was greatly enriched when he married Jill McCormick. The young couple was soon blessed with two beautiful sons, Mackenzie “Mac” and Casey, and they remained the pride and joy of his life. Jill was also a huge part of helping the deli become a success. Mike and Jill were married for 24 years and remained very close friends.
The Rotary Club of Gig Harbor was also a large part of Mike's life. He loved the club and all of its members. Mike served on various projects, fundraisers, and was a fan favorite club president amongst many members. He often developed deep relationships that he highly valued. Mike believed with all of his being in Rotary’s Four-Way Test and lived it every day. With his time in Rotary, Mike had an enormous positive impact on local and international communities as well as close personal relationships within the club. He chose to proudly have the Rotary logo engraved into his headstone where he will peacefully be at rest.
Mike had many fine friends:
Ottie Ladd, brother-in-law, business partner, and closest friend.
Larry Olson, a lifelong friend from Central Valley High School.
Dr. Bob Martin, a fellow Rotarian and golf buddy. Bob was a steadfast companion throughout Mike’s brave fight with cancer. Mike thought Bob had angel wings and their mutual admiration for each other is a wonderful example of true friendship.
Mike maintained a very close, lifelong relationship with his brother Mark. Mark was always there for Mike and protected his little brother from the beginning until the very end as a good big brother would.
In 2002, Mike married his dear Carina. Carina brought with her three wonderful children to the family, Vincent, Teresa, and Chris. They moved to their beautiful Gig Harbor home overlooking the harbor and Mount Rainier. Of course, there was ample garden space for Mike to work his magic, which he treasured immensely. Whether it was traveling in their motorhome or making trips to the Philippines (Carina’s home country), they had a wonderful adventurous life together. Mike and Carina were passionately active in raising money for several amazing projects that bettered the lives and communities for people in the Philippines.
Whether it was family gatherings or Rotary Club, Mike had quite a reputation as the memorable storyteller and witty joke teller. He had a unique and captivating way of gaining an audience’s attention. Mike was a master at writing lyrical rhymed poems for special occasions.
Mike had five grandsons, Oliver (10), Rocky (8), Kingstin (1), Terrence (1), and Warren (2 weeks old). His two sisters, Barbara Ladd and Mitzie Rubenstein, preceded Mike in passing.
The overwhelming theme of Mike’s life was family. He was the patriarch. There was no such thing as sadness or criticism. There was only room for love, constant love. All of the members of his family and his extended family have always gotten along so well. While that might be unusual in this day and age, it was Mike's leading by example that made it all work.
The family respectfully requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to GIFT International; c/o 3813 Mountainview Place, Gig Harbor, WA 98335.
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