In loving memory of James Michael (Mike) Belford: 1952-2023


James Michael (Mike) Belford passed away Dec. 17, 2023, after a very brief illness. 

Mike was born Jan. 8, 1952, to Donald and Cecilia Belford and was the fourth of six children. He grew up in the Olympia area and graduated from North Thurston High School class of 1970. After graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy as a Seabee, spending most of his time in Guam. 

Mike meant Diane while at a forest service Christmas party in 1994. They were married Jan. 18, 1997. They brought together a blended family. 

Mike worked as an electrician at the Cowlitz Stud Mill in Morton, Washington, where he met many cherished friends. He worked as a journeyman electrician at the Seattle IBEW Local 46. He loved his work as an electrician and shared his knowledge with many. 

He loved SCUBA diving, boating, fishing and just being outdoors. 

After retirement, Mike and Diane traveled to Mexico several times and through many states in their fifth wheel. An unforgettable trip was the Alcan Highway trip to Alaska. Several trips were made to the Washington and Oregon beaches to watch sunsets. 

He loved watching his grandchildren play sports. He had a special place in his heart for the MWP Timberwolves. 

Mike was preceded in death by his parents; his stepfather, William Junk; his brother John Elder; his sisters Dianna Walker and Karen Williams; stepbrother Steve Junk; sister-in-law Debbie Belford; nephew Matthew Bednarski; and daughter-in-law Jamie Elledge. He is survived by his loving wife and best friend, Diane Belford; his children, Sean (Lena) Belford, Summer (Ryan) O'meara, Sasha (Josh) Mcpherson, Stephen Belford and bonus children Reuben (Tonya) Elledge and Tammy (Keegan) Kelly; brother Patrick Belford; sisters Sharen (Michael) Lloyd, Vicki (James) Cline; brother-in-law Robert Walker; sister-in-law Michelle Elder; mother-in-law Phyllis Rickets; brother-in-law Fred Rickets; sisters-in-law Terri (Larry) Mays and Ragena (Leon) Foster; 17 grandchildren;two great-grandchildren; and numerous nephews and nieces. He had a special, cherished connection with his nephew Darius (Liz) Elder. 

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Jan. 4 at the Stricklin Funeral Chapel, 1437 S. Gold Street in Centralia. Refreshments will be served