Michael T. Brown passed away suddenly last month. Mike was a friendly face behind the counter at Midtown OKC Plaza Courts Brown's Bakery the last time I saw him.
A childhood neighbor in Heritage Hills, when the first bakery was over at 13th and North Robinson..... and contemporary to my older brothers, Mike graduated from Old Classen High School my freshman year... I want to say he was Valedictorian of his class.
Mike returned to Oklahoma, as did I after living also in Atlanta, Georgia. We lived not too far from one another there, but never crossed paths there.
Mike told some hilarious and informative stories, from behind the counter at the bakery owned forever by his family. This bakery has pretty much always been within walking distance of where I have lived when I have lived in OKC and is my favorite still.
One of my favorite stories was Mike saying that he had schlepped a pre-driving pre-Flaming Lips frontman, Wayne Coyne ( also an Old Classen Graduate) around OKC.
Mike also hung out with a bunch of guys, including my older brother Peter Winslow and Mike Travis doing all kinds of photography and videography things in middle and high school. BTW Mike T. went on to win the Oscar for cinematography in Dances With Wolves, and Pete is the technology guy for Wayne's Flaming Lips laser shows.
Mike was the one who shrugged in answer, as to why he did not continue the path with the others. He noted he never intended to work in the family bakery, much less any bakery... and had been in advanced bakery processes all over the place for years.
My brother giggled ( which he doesn't do often) when I reminded him of Mike and the above.
My family has always had cakes from Brown's for all occasions. Either Mike or his Mom would help us draft a plan.
One of my favorite stories though is taking my very young daughter ( then 2) to the bakery to order her first cake. I think Mike's Mom was the one who introduced that Mike had returned to OKC, and my daughter kept looking and looking at him.
Finally, I had to ask her what the deal was. In a whisper, she wanted to know if he was "The Muffin Man" ( from the song). I did ask on her behalf, and Mike assured us he was NOT and did advise that if we came back another day, perhaps we might meet the man who is in charge of the muffins, and was therefore truly the Muffin Man. She seemed satisfied. Apparently, he got that question often.
When my daughter was older, she determined she wanted a specialty bakery item that we had only seen and been able to get in Atlanta. So, I got a picture and description and again we went to the bakery. Mike, having lived in Atlanta for a number of years had not only worked with the guy who was the baker of this item, but had been to THAT remote bakery and knew how to make THAT item. SCORE! It became a unique imported and loved tradition for my daughter and her friends from that point forward.
Very sorry to learn of Mike's passing, and also for the prior passing of his younger siblings who were my direct contemporaries... Sandy and Randy. My deepest admiration to the family for all Mike's efforts in the family business.
Please know Mike was a young man at death by all standards. http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/oklahoman/obituary.aspx?n=michael-brown... He has a daughter mentioned here who is in need of support for her college education.
Mike and his dry sense of humor will be missed.