Arthur “Michael” Valverde III: February 3, 1978 – February 7, 2021
“No Lord, that is not a laughing hyena! That is 43-year-old Michael entering the gates of heaven with his robust and extraordinary laugh.” Michael was born on February 3, 1978 – to Elizabeth “Liz” Hill (Jeffrey) who was a young mom when Michael was born in Colorado. Which only created that much more of a special bond between the two of them, especially with his granny, aunts, uncles and cousins living in California. Their bond continued to strengthen as they relocated to Tucson, Arizona where Michael grew up and called home. Michael often called himself “The man of the house” as he helped his mom with his two younger sisters, Christina Valverde and Tiffany Sambrano (Albert).
Michael was singular. Someone once said, “No matter who meets Michael, you are impacted by his energy and you automatically felt as if he were family.” Unbeknownst to him, Michael had the ability to draw people in with his smile, his keen sense of humor which included a self-deprecating sense of humor, his affectionate ways and his infectious laughter. Michael was very smart and Lord knows, he’s above critiquing this obituary. Michael was an old soul whose magnetic personality made him that much more special and if you met him once, you instantly fell in love with him.
Now for those of us who were fortunate to have known Michael, you’d better be prepared for that deep- in- the- gut type of laughter that sometimes even hurt. Yet, when you needed him to be supportive or just be by your side during difficult times, he was that man. And if you simply wanted to just kick back, watch movies and eat, he was that person too. Michael was a free spirit, and while he hated to be tied down for too long, he also hated to be away from those he loved for too long as well.
Michael didn’t have a favorite movie or sports team but no worries Tucson, specifically to those 96’ Santa Rita Eagles, he was often ridiculed for not maintaining that Bear Down Spirit. He did though, have love for a juicy cheese burger, a “big fat” burrito, coffee at all times of the day and dancing while he felt the music run through his body. Michael was known for wearing his back pack while riding his bike all over the city of Phoenix in order to keep his “Girlish figure” and “Amazing Legs” as he often put it.
Michael was preceded in death by Ricardo Torres (uncle), Ernestine Torres (granny) and Maria Donovan (aunt). Michael will be tremendously missed by his above family to include his nephews and nieces (Mark, Aaron, Amina and Samaria) and his abundance of friends. So many lovingly called him Mike V, Mikey, Tio Michael, which only solidifies the special relationships he built with so many and confirms the person he was and why he will be missed by so many.
Michael’s memorial service will be held on Friday, March 19, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. at Saguaro Buttes, 5825 S. Old Spanish Trail, 85747 (Masks required) or live stream at https://stream.streamingchurch.tv/stream.php?churchid=church9531 . In lieu of flowers, please honor Michael’s memory by donating to his favorite non-profit organization at https://valleywisehealthfoundation.org/donate/ gift comment should at least include, “In Memory of Michael Valverde @ McDowell Clinic”, part of the Ryan White Program, an organization Michael not only donated to but continuously advocated for.