Mike passed away in the early hours of Monday, April 29th during surgery in Visalia, California. He was vice President of World Wide Sires, Ltd., the world’s leading cattle genetics marketing organization representing the majority of the U.S. Artificial Insemination Cooperatives.
A farm boy from the hills of Arkansas, Mike followed his passion for dairy cattle genetics and received a Bachelor of Science in Dairy Science from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. He was active in school as student Senator, National Officer in ADSA and was the outstanding graduating senior.
Mike was an incredible colleague and great friend, to many around the world. He worked in over 50 countries on four continents during his 34 year tenure at World Wide Sires; most recently in Ireland, the United Kingdom, Iran, Korea, Saudi Arabia, Japan, China and Taiwan. He has been instrumental in bringing world leading genetics to the UK.
Mike was very involved in the dairy industry and local community. He was a past director of the National Dairy Shrine, Rotarian and Director of the YMCA.
Mike never met a stranger and always found the good in people. His never-ending smile, larger-than-life laugh and ability to light up the room will be missed.
He was a proud husband and father to 4 incredible daughters that were the center of his life.
Mike is survived by his wife Debra Rakes, daughter Brittney Creasey (Alexander Creasey), daughter Brenna Keck (Peter Keck), daughter Brooke Rakes, daughter Brilynn Rakes, grandchildren Noel and Asher Keck, brother Randy Rakes (Jack Rakes), sister Missy Gentile (Russ Gentile), father Jerry Rakes, and mother Betty Rakes.