Dr. Michael Keith Schoenecke, age 71, of Stillwater, Oklahoma passed away on December 26, 2020 at 11:33 p.m. at Renaissance in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
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Michael was born March 17, 1949 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to Roy Fredrick and Mary Louise Schoenecke. He was lucky enough to have lived in a number of cities and states, including Oklahoma, Washington state, Guam, Ohio, Texas and returning home to Oklahoma after retirement. Michael’s family traveled through the Orient on their way home from Guam, giving him the opportunity to see Hong Kong. He relished seeing the world and vowed to do the same for his family, a promise that he was committed to his entire life.
Michael married Deborah Joan Cole on June 20, 1970 at Linwood Methodist Church in Oklahoma City. He earned his B.A. in English from the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond. Afterwards he earned an M.A. in English at UCO and a Ph.D. as a Doctor of Philosophy in American Studies from Oklahoma State University. Michael went on to become a professor at Bellevue College in Bellevue, Nebraska for two years. Then he joined the English Department at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas where he founded and built the Film Studies Program. He retired after 33 years at Texas Tech.
Michael was a member of First Presbyterian Church in Stillwater, Oklahoma. He was a co-founder of the Southwest/Texas Popular Culture Association and served as the Executive Director of the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association for 5 years. In both roles he was responsible for building the membership, and did so with consistent membership increases every year.
Michael was an excellent golfer and had a passion for the game and its history. He even tried out for the US Amateur in 1986. He wrote several articles about golf and enjoyed researching its history. He loved to travel, taking his family on many trips through the western United States. He also traveled with his wife and friends to National Parks, enjoyed cruising, visited the Mexican Riviera, Alaska, the Panama Canal, Costa Rica, Iceland, Wales and Scotland.
Michael was preceded in death by his parents Roy and Mary Schoenecke, and his brothers Phil Schoenecke and Jay Schoenecke. He is survived by his wife, Deborah; daughters Heather Disarro (Nate) and Salah Gibbons (Brett); four grandchildren Weston, Austin, Maggie and Jackson; his sister Jan Baccus and her husband Garrett; sisters-in-law Mary Kay Windham (Buddy) and Cindy Wells (Doyce) along with numerous nieces and nephews; dear friends Gary and Charla Hurt.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers donations be made to St. Jude Children’s Hospital or CurePSP.org.
The family would like to thank all of those who have given of their time, aid, meals, and support to help Deborah, his sister Jan, and friends Gary and Charla with his care needs. The staff at Renaissance, Visiting Angels and Physician’s Choice Hospice were instrumental in caring for him when Deborah was not able to. Special thanks to Jake and Sarah Erlich and Joe and Linda Millar who have been the hands and feet of Jesus as their neighbors and friends.
Memorial services will be held January 16 ,2021; however, due to COVID-19 concerns it will be a private ceremony. Video of the service, as well as space for sharing of memories, can be found on Michael’s page at www.strodefh.com.