Michael C. Ester

  • Died: August 19, 2019
  • Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana

D O McComb and Sons - Maplewood Park

4017 Maplecrest Rd.
Fort Wayne, IN 46815

Tel. (260) 426-9494

Tribute & Message From The Family

Michael Curtis Ester, 45, of Fort Wayne, IN passed away on Monday, August 19, 2019. He was born in Van Wert, OH, on April 27, 1974.

Mike graduated from Snider High School in 1992 and from Manchester College in 1997, and received a Master's Degree from Olivet Nazarene University.

He was a teacher with Fort Wayne Community Schools, and coached wrestling for 22 years. His love of wrestling started at the age of five and continued through high school finishing 3rd in the state. He continued wrestling in college becoming a national qualifier.

Mike had a love of the great outdoors and enjoyed many hunting and fishing trips with his dad and son and others of the Snider Wrestling family. As a good friend posted, "Your light will always shine in so many young men's lives that you influenced and impacted throughout the years of teaching and coaching." Mike was an amazing and inspirational husband and father. He taught to always believe in the best of everyone and to always give 110%. He was very caring, loving and devoted to his immediate and extended family and friends. He always looked forward to their annual family vacation in Florida each summer.

Mike is survived by his wife, Tami; daughter, Brittani; and son, Brady; parents, Howard and Marsha Ester; sister, Michelle Krider; in-laws, Larry and Lucy Dafforn, Doug and Cara Dafforn, and Andy and Kelli Luckett; nieces, Kennedy and Emerson Krider and Shaelynne Luckett; and nephews, Owen Krider and Breckin Luckett. He is also survived by two aunts, Marilyn (Roger) Hupe and Mary Culbertson; and five cousins, Matt Hupe, Sabrina Kitsos, Kirsten Saldivar, Nick Kitsos, and Courtney Leach. He was preceded in death by his aunt, Marlene Kitsos, whose husband, Ted Kitsos, survives.

Visitation is Friday, August 23, 2019, from 12-3 and 5-9 at D.O. McCombs and Sons Maplewood Park, 4017 Maplecrest Road, Fort Wayne, IN 46815. The funeral service will be held on Saturday, August 24, 2019, at 11:00 a.m. at Blackhawk Ministries, 7400 E. State Blvd., Ft. Wayne, Indiana 46815.

Memorials may be made to Snider Wrestling or NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness).


Condolence & Memory Journal

I was a teammate with Mike in college. I always enjoyed talking to him when I saw him at wrestling tournaments. Praying for your family.

Posted by Ryan Rust - Plymouth, IN - Friend   September 04, 2019

I'm so sorry for your loss. I have such great memories of hanging out at Ester's during our high school days. Mike's passing is heartbreaking and I'm truly sorry for your loss. Prayers and thoughts for the whole family!

Posted by Michelle McDonald (Niccum) - Highlands Ranch, CO - Friend   August 24, 2019


Our thoughts and prayers for the Ester and Dafforn families.
Love, Jim and Nancy Emmerson

Posted by A friend   August 24, 2019

Thank you for all the great Snider wrestling memories, "Spike!" You were a great guy and were always so cool to me. I'm glad to have known you and are families were friends. R.I.P., Spike! God bless!

Posted by Mark Miguel - Fort Wayne, IN - Friend   August 24, 2019

Sending Thoughts and Prayers to the Family.

Posted by Cedrick Tinker - Fort Wayne, IN - Classmate   August 23, 2019

Dear Tami, Howard, Marsha and family
Please know that our hearts go out to you. We have such happy memories of Mike and the guys playing baseball at St. Joe LL. It didn't matter whose team our boys were on...off the field they remained best buds through high school, college and adulthood. Mike's good humor and laughter echoing from our basement will always bring back smiles. With sincerest, thoughts, prayers and sympathy, Denny and Monya Weissert

Posted by Denny and Monya Weissert - The Villages,, FL - Friend   August 23, 2019

Mike my main man. I'm deeply crushed. May u join the other champions that have gone on before you
I will never forget our hunting and fishing trips look down on me and send me that big buck
Love you brother
Howard and Brady please stay in contact if there is anything you or the family needs don't hesitate to call. Dan Nolan. 602-3124

Posted by Dan Nolan - Fort Wayne, IN - Friend   August 22, 2019

I had the pleasure of working with Mike at FWCS when he became an APE Teacher in special ed. He also gave me the greatest fundraising idea that he'd used at Snider with the wrestling team and that the South Side boys soccer team then used. I am so very sorry for your loss and wish you peace through your memories.

Posted by Roxy Rockwell - Fort Wayne, IN   August 22, 2019

Tami & Family... I am so deeply sorry to hear the loss of Mike. May the good Lord wrap his loving arms around each and every one of you.

Posted by Ben Liechty - Decatur, IN   August 22, 2019

We are so saddened to hear of Spike's death and we have asked God to be with the family at this time, to bring them comfort and peace in knowing that He is in God's care now.

Posted by Diane & Jerry Burch - Fort Wayne, IN - Friend   August 22, 2019

So Sorry for your loss, you are all in our prayers during this difficult time.

Posted by Philip Dafforn - South Charleston, OH   August 22, 2019

Rest In Peace, praying for the family and his friends. I met Mike at Blackhawk Middle School 3 years ago as I was a spec Ed asst then I saw him again at Harris elementary

Posted by Monica Johnson - Fort Wayne, IN - Acquaintance   August 21, 2019

We were so sorry to hear the news. We are on vacation north of Traverse City, but will try to get there on Saturday.You are all in our thoughts and prayers. Love you guys.

Posted by Greg & Linda Gunder - Niles, MI - Family Friend   August 21, 2019

Mike was a great guy that loved his family very much. Mike was not only a passionate wrestling coach but also a life mentor to many young men throughout the years. Mike you will be missed by all who had the fortune of knowing you.

Posted by Eric Whicker - Fort Wayne, IN - Family Friend   August 21, 2019


Prayer with family thanks for being GREAT MENTOR to my nephew Darryl L.>j

Posted by DARRICK GRAYSON - HARRISBURG, PA - Acquaintance   August 21, 2019

He was my team captain in college. I have never seen someone push themselves so hard. I tried to follow his example, but he was a much stronger warrior than me. 5 AM in the weight room was just part of his fabric. I enjoyed watching him in the corner. You could see him at youth tournaments with a bunch of kids who know nothing. Years later you would see him walk one of those kids out under the spot light with their faces on the jumbotron. I miss him already.

Posted by Andy Wood - Elkhart, IN - Friend   August 21, 2019

Family Album

Life Stories

Coach Ester was a wonderful influence on my boys. Both of them wrestled at Snyder while Mike was head coach. Mike guided them to manhood and helped us form young men we could be proud of. Mike and Blake became close friends and had more than just wrestling in common. (But according to them, what else is there!) Mike was even an usher at his wedding all the way in Pittsburgh. To Tami, Brady & Brittany, we are so sorry for your loss. Our Prayers are with you now and forever. May you find peace in knowing how very many lives Mike had an impact on.