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Michael S. Russell
December 10, 2023
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Michael Stephen Russell passed away peacefully in his sleep at home on December 10, 2023, with his beloved 10 year-old “puppy” Nina by his side. He had faced many health challenges for a long time.
Michael spent the last year living with his daughter Katherine Conway-Russell, partner Mark Scozzari and daughter Arietta Scozzari, who gracefully took on the role of full-time caregivers. They transformed their home to make it accessible and comfortable for Mike where he felt safe and loved.
Michael spent his adult life working as a highly regarded railroad man. He started as a lineman for Penn Central RR at the age of 18. He soon took a job with Conrail where he was eventually promoted to Inspector for the Southern Maryland branch, working from Washington, D.C. to the PEPCO Power Plants at Chalk Point and Morgantown. Michael went on from Conrail to start a private railroad construction company in operation for six years. He later took a job with the international construction corporation Balfour Beatty Rail out of Jacksonville, Florida, where he was a Senior Project Manager. With Balfour Beatty he prepared bids and worked all over the country managing projects from Los Angeles to rural Pennsylvania. He worked and lived for several years in Utah and Texas prior to returning to, and eventually retiring in, Jacksonville with wife Annette and bonus-daughter Micah.
Although he enjoyed and excelled at his work for the railroad, his “first” love was a 42’ Chesapeake Bay-built fishing boat named MY PAL, moored in Deale, Maryland. Captain Mike was truly in his element behind the wheel of MY PAL with at least eight lines in the water. There wasn't an emergency on the water that Michael couldn't handle. Michael's crew, friends, or clients always came home safely and happy after a day catching plentiful Striped Bass or Blue Fish.
Michael was predeceased by his wife Annette Begley Russell, parents John “Jack” Alexander Russell and Lenore Vincelette Russell, and nephew William “Bill” Reagan V. He leaves behind twin daughters, Katherine Conway-Russell (Mark Scozzari) and Lauren Conway-Russell (Maxwell Hume), along with their mother Julia Conway and their sister Helen Conway; bonus daughter Micah Begley Sanders (Chaz Sanders), and his two beloved grandbabies Emory and Eden Sanders; his five siblings: John Russell (Sue), Jeffrey Russell (Elinor), Maureen Huffner (Forest), Lenore Liller (Todd), and Paul Russell; and many nieces, nephews, and their children.
A memorial service will be held at Joy Reigns Lutheran Church in Edgewater at 1pm on Saturday, January 13, 2024. At that time, family and friends may gather informally to share memories, followed by a brief service at 2:30pm.
Joy Reigns Church is located at 35 Mayo Road, Edgewater, MD 21037.