Mike was born and raised in central Illinois (Decatur). He was not raised in a Christian home, but from an early age, his grandparents and several aunts and uncles were instrumental in helping him develop his walk with Christ. One aunt and uncle (his dad's sister) in particular, took him to church regularly, as both were ordained pastors in the Foursquare Gospel Church. It was there that Mike first began singing—in a middle school youth choir. Many of his family members were musically talented, so it seemed singing was always a part of family events.
In 1974, after graduating from high school, Mike moved to Kentucky, where one of those aunts (his dad's other sister) lived. Married in 1976 to Kim, the couple has two married children: Bryan (Jessica) and Kayla (Marty) and three grandchildren. I don't think there is a more proud "Popaw" to be found! Don't get him started, as he will start with the stories and pull out the picture album (on his phone, of course, so it is always with him). LOL