MICHAEL LYZENGA, 65, of Milton, passed suddenly Sunday morning, rehearsing with the praise band of New Height Church. He leaves behind the love of his life of 26 years, Karen Lyzenga, a daughter, Tarrah Bowen, a grandson, Heath Bowen, stepson, Steven (Keshia) Peterson, and their children, Aloise, Silas and Sullivan Peterson. He is also survived by his father, Gilbert (Grace) Lyzenga; sister-in-law and her husband, Debbie and David Dial; brother-in-law and his wife, Jim and Linda Clagg; three nephews, Chase Dial, Tyler Dial (Laura) and Justin Clagg. He was preceded in death by his brother, David Lyzenga, and his mother, Shirlee Lyzenga; and his mother-in-law, Shirley Clagg Hughes. He has many close family and friends all over the world, too numerous to count. In the greater musical community, his passing ripples out to nearly everyone. As a songwriter and smoky-voiced singer, he’s played in several local bands and one collaborative overseas band, his favorite being his church band, which he used to worship his Lord and Savior. He has contributed original songs to some great singers, served as a music promoter, and helped birth and keep alive the Huntington Blues Society that has been lifting up the next generation of incredibly talented acts. Without the sheer determination of HBS President and Mike, there would be no Diamond Teeth Mary Blues Fest. Folks from Grayson to St. Albans and anywhere in between can testify to Mike’s sincere and hearty promotion of their shows, festivals, music series and music appreciation groups, even if he was not personally, or even peripherally, involved. And if Mike really loved you, and he loved a lot, you also got “Bamboozled” (the name of his Bamboo creations that he just gave away). Mike also loved to advocate for organ donation, as his life was preserved for many fruitful years following a liver transplant. Mike’s goodness and his pure-hearted power to connect with people, whether lifelong friends, new friends or Italian friends, was a great example of how you should love like Christ. He used his precious time here to joyously spread love and music in a world that needs more of it by the minute. He was a member of New Heights Church and Vice President of Huntington Blues Society. Visitation will be held at Chapman’s Mortuary on Friday, December 3. Friends may call from 6 to 9 p.m. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, December 4, at 11 a.m. at New Heights Church, 1033 N. Main Street, Milton. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Huntington Blues Society, a 501(c)(3), at 3210 King Road, Barboursville, WV 25504.

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