Michael Hopper 

(March 22, 1975 - March 30, 1994)

In Loving Memory


  Mike was an amazing child. He seemed to be able to accomplish anything that interested him without the help of anyone. For example, he learned to ride a skateboard at 8 months of age and a regular bicycle at 3 years of age without any help whatsoever from adults, strictly on his own. Although, he possessed this amazing ability to almost immediately accomplish anything he wanted to learn or do, it often created distress for his parents. One such example was when he disappeared from home and a search party couldn't find him anywhere. Later, a woman who worked as a banker at our bank we used brought him home. He had gone all the way to our bank to get a sucker, which he always got from the bankers whenever he accompanied us to the bank, and then gave them directions to drive him back to his home! 

    He was as loving and giving as he was gifted and talented. No matter how many times you gave him money to get himself something, he always found a way to get something for those around him. If you gave him just enough money to buy his favorite treat from the popsicle man, he would return with something less and a treat for you. But, as many who give fully of themselves for others, he suffered great pain from those who took advantage of his giving and loving kindness. Somehow, he knew several years in advance that he was going to die before he reached the age of twenty one.

He had one great dream that was so great and special that he only allowed it to be known when he died and granted to him obviously to see after his death as it was impossible to predict, know, or control by anyone no matter how hard people were to try. It was the discovery of this dream and the realization that he was being granted his one great wish upon his death that had a tremendous impact on my life and spiritual beliefs thereafter. There were a great many lessons taught to me by him during his life and through his death and, there continues to be lessons discovered to this day that he continues to teach me.

    The Native Americans believe that spiritual guidance comes to us in many forms including through animals. Animal totems reflect animals that we have a special attraction or relationship with and our animal totem helps understand ourselves and guide us spiritually in life. If there was an animal totem I would create for Michael, it would have to include the lizard, snake, cat, dog, and the eagle. Lizards are very sensitive to subtle vibrations and are very perceptive. They also symbolize the power of dreams.

Mike was very sensitive to the slightest changes in people's energies andwas very intuitive. His dreams were very powerful indeed. Snakes remain close to the earth and are also very sensitive to the slightest vibrations around them. They tend to grow by shedding their skin in one piece and moving forward, leaving it behind. This probably reflects the area Mike had the most difficulty with. The ability to let go and move forward from all the pain people inflicted on him in response to his giving and loving kindness was his greatest flaw and downfall.

Cats symbolize curiosity, independence, and cleverness. They also represent mystery. Mike was always a very curious child. At age three, he asked and knew why the sun changed colors throughout the day, the moon changed shape and size each day, where rainbows came from, why the sky appeared blue, and literally hundreds of other things many people never even think of during their entire life!

Dogs represent spirit, loyalty, and faithfulness. They are protective and loving and, anyone who knew Mike for even a short time, knew he was definitely all these things. Eagles symbolize power, spiritual growth, healing, and vision. Late in his life, Mike began to really grow and heal himself in many ways. He learned to face the hurt that came from others and deal with it in a way. He let it go as the snake lets go of his old skin and move forward. Forgiveness and making things right was a dominant force during this time of his life. He had great vision and insight into people. Perhaps, it was though his great vision and powerful dreams that he knew of his impending death. I, and all who knew him, will forever miss him. He will remain forever young and forever in our hearts.