Michael Joseph Deets, beloved son of Dan and Mary Joanne Deets, passed away. Loving brother of Stephen Deets; also survived by his aunts, Betty Sue Lolkes, Marlene Moore, Sandy Gesswein, Karen Huskey; and a host of other loving family and friends. He was employed by the Maryland Transit Administration as a Deputy Director and was active in the community with Charles North and the Midtown Benefit District to improve Baltimore City. He graduated from Wilde Lake High School, and The College of William and Mary. He was active for many years in Howard County politics and served as Columbia council representative from Wilde Lake. He loved square dancing.
Graveside services will be held on Monday, March 7, 2011 at 2 p.m., Crest Lawn Memorial Park, 2150 Mount View Road, Marriottsville, MD 21104. A memorial service to celebrate his life will be held on Saturday, March 12, 2011 at 2 PM at St. Marks Lutheran Church, 1900 St. Paul Street, Baltimore, Maryland. A Michael J. Deets Scholarship Fund, is being set up at Columbia Foundation, 10227 Wincopin Circle, Suite G-15, Columbia, MD 21044.
Square dancing was a major interest in Michael’s life. He began square dancing as a high school freshman in Columbia, Md, where he grew up, and where he also danced with a family square dance club. In Baltimore, Mike was involved as Chesapeake Squares was forming in the latter 1980‘s. Along with help from the DC Lamda Squares Club, in the spring of 1988, Mike angeled in a large Mainstream Class that brought many new dancers into Chesapeake Squares. This was at a time of strong interest in Country Western dance. In 1994, Mike was elected Vice President of Chesapeake Squares. He then began managing the Pass the Ocean, Hon! fly-in that is held at Rehoboth Beach, DE, annually in early May, a task he performed for 12 years.
In 1996, Mike became club Secretary, serving until 2000. That year at the IAGSDC annual convention, Crack the Crab, which Chesapeake Squares was hosting in Baltimore, Mike was elected national Secretary, a post he held for 3 years. In 2004, he was elected to the Chesapeake Squares Board as a Member-at-Large, serving 3 terms until 2010, when he was elected club President.
Square Dance Evangelist
In the mid to late 1990’s, Mike made a special personal effort to help the York, PA, square dance club, Susquehanna Squares, organize and sustain operations. Dancers were drawn both from York and Harrisburg, with the dance venue shifting between both cities. The complicated schedule coordination required was troublesome. Despite hard work, and sometime angels from Baltimore assisting, to Mike’s dismay, the York effort eventually did not succeed.
- "The Dual Life of Stephen Deets" Babson Magazine, Summer 2014
- The Baltimore Sun, 05 Mar 2011