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Michael Lisle Anderson

March 29, 2002 - October 11, 2018

Michael Lisle Anderson, 16, passed away peacefully on October 11, 2018 surrounded by his family and many close friends in his final moments. He was born in Chicago, Illinois on March 29, 2002, six weeks early, to deer-in-headlights parents Sarah and Duane Anderson. He was a very difficult baby. He gave his parents no rest for the first many months of his life. He preferred very short spans of sleep while being held on someone’s chest. One unlucky person who unknowingly rang the doorbell right after Michael had finally fallen asleep was met by his over-tired babysitting grandpa, wielding a baseball bat. The fact that he was such a “bad” baby is ironic, because as all parents know, the days are long but the years are short, and Michael quickly grew into the sweetest, kindest, most easy-natured kid.

He had a huge vocabulary very early on and was always asking “why?”. This curiosity grew him to be very intelligent and quick-witted. He had a profound memory. He could put most adults to shame on many subjects very early on, especially in the area of sports. By Kindergarten, he had memorized the entire Indianapolis Colts roster; their names, numbers and positions, and he could tell you exactly what was going on in the game. His family lived in Las Vegas at the time, but his grandfather was the Colt’s linebacker’s coach, and Michael was a loyal fan. His first grade teacher once called his parents in to discuss a difficult situation. Sweet Michael was exhibiting some unusual signs of anger and malice toward one particular person on several different occasions, and she was very concerned about this, as it was so out of character for him. He had drawn pictures and written in his journal about his dislike for this person. He even seemed to wish physical harm upon him. Who was this Tom? A friend? A family member? His parents laughed. Turns out, he was referring to Tom Brady, whom his teacher had never even heard of.

Of course, Michael would never wish actual ill-will on anyone. Of all of the words that people have continually used as they share stories and memories of Michael, the truth that continually shines is, he always put others first. People have phrased this all different ways: “Generous.” “Selfless.” “Friend to all.” “Compassionate.” “Caring.” “He had the best heart.” “He was more concerned about your feelings than his own.” “He was always there when I needed a friend.” Two different neighbors from two different states described Michael by saying, “He was like a brother to me.”

That was Michael. A true friend. A brother to anyone needing a brother. He genuinely loved his younger cousins, holding babies, playing games or making them laugh. They all adored him. He was also the actual brother to Jake Anderson. Four year old Michael had hoped for a brother. “Make it a boy!” he told his mom’s doctor more than once. He was ecstatic when his wish came true, and his younger brother, Jake, was born. He was nurturing, maybe overly so, and this wasn’t always well received.  They loved plotting to get takeout instead of eating whatever their dad had just cooked, asking their mother simple math questions so they could laugh at her counting on her fingers, watching inappropriate tv shows, and asking Michael’s unsuspecting nurses innocent questions that would let them make “that’s what she said” jokes. It was almost twelve years of friendly, competitive, metaphorical and literal brotherly wrestling with the little brother holding his big brother’s hand and comforting him in the end.

Michael’s sincere, caring, gentle nature, quick-witted sarcasm and unique ability to poke fun with no malice will be sorely missed. He is survived by his parents, Sarah (Murphy) and Duane Anderson; his brother, Jake Anderson; His grandparents, Mary and Lisle Anderson, Gaye and Michael Murphy, many aunts, uncles, cousins and friends and a bulldog named Addie who misses playing fetch.

Please help us in spreading the word about these gatherings to celebrate Michael’s beautiful, too-short life:


Memorial Service at Zionsville Fellowship

9090 W. Oak Street

Zionsville, IN 46077

Sunday, October 21, 2018

1:30 PM


Followed by a gathering for all, to do what Michael loved most: watching football with friends and family and sharing a meal together.


Rush on Main

112 S Main St

Zionsville, IN 46077

3:00 PM – close

Open House

In lieu of flowers, please consider doing as Michael did: Michael generously donated his Make-a-Wish to a Ewing’s Sarcoma fund so that other young people may have a chance at survival. Whenever he was asked to choose a gift basket at the hospital, he would pick something for his young cousins, brother or friends. This week, consider donating to either 1million4anna.org, rileykids.org or simply putting someone else first in honor of Michael, but don’t take yourself too seriously. In the words of his father, no matter how perfect this obituary, our acts of kindness for others or the celebration of life we have planned, Michael would surely still make fun of us for it in his loving, tongue-in-cheek way.

Service Information

Visitation Information

Date: Sunday, October 21, 2018

Time: 3:00 pm

Service Information

Date: Sunday, October 21, 2018

Time: 1:30 pm

End Time: 2:30 pm

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