In Loving Memory of SSG Michael David Ward.
Michael David Ward was born on January 4, 1970, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to Patricia and Derrell Ward. Mike went to his reward on March 6, 2020, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Mike attended Lincoln High School in Sioux Falls, and went on to study Finance at South Dakota State University. In 1988, Mike joined the US ARMY Reserve and went to Basic Training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma and Advanced initial training at Fort McClellan, Alabama, where he trained as a Specialist in Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Warfare. In 1991, Mike was deployed to Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm where he was attached to the famed 1st Infantry Division (The Big Red One).
In 1994, Mike met the love of his life, Shannon Burns. The two were inseparable from then on. Mike and Shannon were married in 1997; two years later (and to Mike's great joy), Brett Ward was born to the happy couple. Mike truly loved being a husband and father.
Mike joined Delta Company 1/179 Infantry 45th Division Oklahoma Army National Guard and was deployed to New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The mission was to stop looting and to evacuate survivors. In 2008, Mike was again deployed to Iraq to serve a year in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Mike's final deployment was to Afghanistan in 2011, with Echo Company 1/179 Infantry during Operation Enduring Freedom, where he was awarded the Bronze Star. He served honorably in three different campaigns in three separate decades.
Mike retired from the military in 2012, and worked for Phillips 66, Ponca City Refinery, where he excelled as much at P-66 as he did in his selfless military service. Mike was loved and respected by his coworkers, friends, fellow soldiers, and family.
Mike is survived by his loving wife, Shannon; his wonderful son, Brett Ward; his sweet mother, Patricia Ward, proud father, Derrell Ward; beloved sister, Tania Warnock and Mike's mother in law, Sue Snyder and father-in-law, Eddie Snyder; a niece and several nephews. Mike had a special place in his heart for his family and especially for his uncle, Mike Smith.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Thursday, March 12, 2020, at 11:00 A. M. at the Tonkawa Methodist Church.
In lieu of flowers, Mike's family asks that you donate to the VFW Post 1201, 2821 East Prospect Avenue, Ponca City, OK 74604.
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