Submitted by the city of Geneva
- Memorial Service: Saturday, June 21st, 2014 at 2:00 PM at O-Ace-Is, 6639 South Route US 31, Bunker Hill, Indiana
- Burial Location: Private
Former Peru, Ind., resident Michael James Buffington, 64, Geneva, Ill., passed away June 12, 2014, as a result of injuries sustained in a traffic accident that happened near Sugar Grove, Ill.
Born Jan. 7, 1950, in Peru, Ind., Michael was the fourth of 14 children born to William and Kate Buffington, a family that totals 13 brothers and sisters.
Michael graduated from Peru High School and went on to earn bachelor degrees in business finance and accounting from Indiana University, Bloomington, Ind. He also received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from IU’s arch rival, Purdue University, West Lafayette, In., which clearly was his favorite college as his choice of decor in his home reflected.
He was married to Jacqueline “Jaci” Sue Clark Jan. 3, 1970, and they had been inseparable for more than four decades. Their marriage was blessed with three children, nine grandchildren and three step-grandchildren.
Michael held the position of superintendent of electrical services for Geneva, Ill., at the time of his passing. He had held that position since 2004. Geneva City Administrator Mary McKittrick said, “We are fortunate to have known and worked with him, and Geneva is a better place because of him. Mike was a gentle leader and one of the smartest people I've ever known. His loss will certainly be felt by our entire organization for a long time.” The City of Geneva has honored Michael by lowering all municipal flags to half-staff.
Michael previously was the superintendent of electric services for Geneseo, Ill., director of Lawrenceburg, Ind., Municipal Utilities and general manager for Peru, Ind., Utilities. Michael was passionate about the energy industry and would talk at length about the scope and impact that his position would play in the daily life of his customers.
He served as president of the Northern Illinois Municipal Power Agency, was a member of the board of directors for the Illinois Municipal Electric Agency and a member of the management committee for the board of directors of Prairie State Generating Company.
Michael was involved with Kiwanis International, was a member of the Knights of Columbus, and once held the position of president of the board of directors for the Miami County, Ind., YMCA. A golfer, Michael also was an avid walker and an advocate for his personal weight loss program. He was an enthusiastic fan of all Purdue sports and a recent convert to fly fishing. On a recent trip to Missouri, he landed a number of trout that he was more than excited about catching and displaying pictures of on social media.
His biggest passion was his family, and Michael was always quick with a smile for his grandkids, was known for having long phone conversations with his kids, and observed administering a daily quota of at least 12 hugs, for his wife, Jaci.
Survivors also include, in addition of his wife, Geneva, Ill.; son Matthew and daughter-in-law, Dawn Buffington, Peru, Ind., and their children, Erica, Matthew, Mason and Michael; daughter Melissa and son-in-law, Brian Gallagher, also of Peru, and her children Raelee and Nolan and step-grandchildren, Alexander, Andrew and Austin; son Clark and daughter-in-law, Tracey Buffington, Alton, Mo., and their children, Connor and Caleb, and siblings Kate Cole Buffington and her husband, David Mitchell, Pensacola, Fla.; William Buffington, North Carolina; J.O. and his wife, Toni Buffington, Peru; Pat Buffington, also of Peru; John and his wife, Beth Buffington, Livonia, Mich.; Joe and his wife, Jeryl Buffington, Peru; Janie and her husband David Curtis, Russellville, Ky.; Pete and his wife, Kim Buffington, Peru; Bo and her husband, Saul Thompson, Antioch, Ill.; Maureen TenEyck, Denver, Colo.; Erin Buffington; Shawn Mary and her husband, Trent Jones, Mexico, Ind; Colleen Buffington, Antioch, Ill.; and many, many nieces and nephews.
Preceding in death were his parents and one granddaughter, AnnaMarie.
A memorial service will be held at O-Ace-Is, 6639 South Route U.S. 31, Bunker Hill, Ind., on Saturday, June 21, beginning at 2 p.m. Please dress casually. Memorials may be made in memory of Colleen’s “big brother Mike” to the Adult Down Syndrome Center, c/o Merrily Smith, 1610 Luther Lane, Park Ridge, Ill., 60068.
Any one wishing to send a card may mail it to City Hall, and we will pass it along to the Buffington Family. Our address is City of Geneva, 22 S. First St., Geneva, IL 60134.