Phillip ‘Mike’ McPhedran, 70
Phillip “Mike” McPhedran passed away peacefully on Nov. 3, 2018, at Schneidmiller Hospice House in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Born on May 21, 1948, at Great Lakes Naval Hospital in Illinois, Mike was the second son to John and Phyllis McPhedran. When his father’s tour of duty was completed, the family settled in Huntington Beach, Calif., where Mike’s two sisters joined the family.
His sisters, Colleen and Kathy, remember Mike as the “fun brother,” as he would build them forts and tents, engage in some wild pillow fights and always played games with them. On the rare occasion their parents would go out, they would always beg for Mike to be their “babysitter” as their older brother, Jay, was no fun at all.
Being raised so close to the Pacific Ocean, surfing was more important to Mike than school. So he dropped out of school to follow his passions for surfing, cars and motorcycles. The great outdoors was where he wanted to be. One of his favorite memories was visiting family at Coos Bay, Ore., where he fished for salmon and they would have delicious salmon patties. Later in life, whenever his mother-in-law invited him for dinner, he was always quick to suggest she prepare salmon patties — they were a favorite!
Following that love for forests, water and wildlife eventually brought Mike to settle in Coeur d’Alene, where he met the love of his life, Karen Renner. Their relationship also included Mike’s sons, Kalum and Mac and daughter, Jessica.
Mike was very intelligent and could accomplish anything he was really interested in. He held many jobs in construction, landscaping, etc. and really loved his last job on the maintenance crew at Kootenai County Fairgrounds.
Mike and Karen spent their leisure time camping, taking picnic lunches to Coeur d’Alene Lake for afternoons of swimming, and parking their motorhome at Karen’s parents cabin on Teepee Creek in the Coeur d’Alene National Forest. There they would take walks, watch wildlife and do projects, such as building a beautiful river rock patio for the fire pit. It was there that many memories were made of happy times spent with family and friends. Their family home always included several dogs and cats that they treated as humans.
Mike’s kids recall the many lessons he taught them: respect for others, good manners and a good work ethic — to name a few. His daughter, Jessica, hates firewood to this day due to the many truckloads of wood they split and stacked with their father. The kids always had chores to do before they could play and do fun things, such as fishing at Fernan Lake.
In 2014 Karen was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and together she and Mike fought a valiant 15-month battle before she passed away in November of 2015. Mike missed her terribly but made an effort to spend time with his kids, in-laws and close friend, Mike Cooper. To enrich his knowledge of the world he enjoyed reading and watching the Discovery, National Geographic and History channels.
Mike was preceded in death by his parents and his wife of 27 years, Karen. He is survived by his brother, Homer “Jay”; sisters, Colleen (Ray) Lehausen and Kathleen (Tim) Garner; his sons, Kalum and Mac; daughters, Valerie, Maureen and Jessica; grandchildren, Ashley, Malcom, Callihan, Brennen, Kianna, Maykia and Cash; and great-grandchildren, Deshun, Savanta and King. Mike is also survived by in-laws, Harlan and Barbara Renner; and his close, special friend, Mike Cooper.
With Karen’s passing, the light went out in his life. She was the rock that anchored his life. Although Mike fought many demons here on earth, he is finally at peace with the Lord. Friends and family remember him as a good man who will be greatly missed by those who knew him.
There will be no services held at this time, but rather a celebration of life at a later date. Memorials can be made to the Kootenai Humane Society, 11650 N. Ramsey Road, Hayden, ID 83835.
Yates Funeral Home is entrusted with final arrangements. Please visit Mike’s online memorial and sign his guest book at www.yatesfuneralhomes.com.