Mike Doran — or Big Mike as he was known to many who loved him — died Monday February 7th in the ICU of Beaufort Memorial Hospital of COVID-19 at the age of 65. Mike was preceded in death by his parents, Lawrence and Elizabeth Doran.
He is survived by the love of his life, Kathy Doran of Beaufort, South Carolina; his two girls, eldest daughter Jamison Doran and her husband Grant Maloney of Arlington, Virginia and his youngest daughter Katelyn Doran and her partner Bede Jordan of Seattle, Washington; his beloved older sister Jane Garner and her husband Ron of Newport, North Carolina; and countless nieces, nephews, and extended family he adored.
Those who knew Mike knew he was larger than life. He never met a stranger and — to the embarrassment of his family much of the time — would walk up to anyone to take a picture or strike up a conversation or tell a joke. Mike had a wicked sense of humor. In fact, in the hospital, as he was about to be put on a ventilator, a healthcare worker in the room told a dirty joke (one of Mike’s favorite genres of jokes) and Mike, even in his weakened state fighting like hell against COVID, blurted out the punchline and laughed and laughed. He had the best laugh. And everyone else in that room laughed too. That’s who Mike was.
Mike also loved to travel and some of his happiest times were cruising in the Caribbean with Kathy, visiting his girls in Seattle and D.C, and spending time with his sister and brother-in-law in their mountain cabin in western Virginia.
He was a fabulous chef and was famous for his big pots of spaghetti and chili, often made on Sunday afternoons while watching football. He was also the best sous chef anyone could ever want and was happy to stand in the kitchen and do any and all tedious chopping you might need.
Mike also loved puttering around in his yard and garden. He loved growing vegetables and herbs and was always ordering new seeds (sometimes from very sketchy websites) to plant in his garden. He took such pride in getting his hands dirty and watching his little seedlings grow into full-blown plants.
In lieu of flowers, Mike’s family asks that you donate to the Beaufort Memorial Hospital Foundation, so others in the Lowcountry can receive the excellent and compassionate care he did. We are forever grateful for the kindness and love his nurses, doctors, and staff at BMH showed not only to him everyday of his battle but the kindness they (especially his nurses) showed his family. We are all eternally grateful. Beaufort Memorial Hospital Foundation
His family also encourages everyone who loved Mike to register to be an organ donor. While it was not nearly enough time, we all got an extra year and a half with Big Mike thanks to the generosity of a stranger who chose life: Donate Life
A celebration of Mike’s life will happen at a later date after his family has time to handle the shock and grief that comes with such a monumental loss and details will be shared with close family and friends in due time. In the meantime, please find time to celebrate this giant of a man. Buy the stranger at the bar a drink, tell a dirty joke, make your loved ones a meal, watch an old movie, or go out on the water — those were all some of Mike’s favorite things.
And please, get vaccinated. Mike was vaccinated and boosted and took every precaution to keep himself and his family safe. Unfortunately far too many people have not done the same. No family should have to go through what his family is going through right now. Get vaccinated.