Mike J. Pappas age 79, of Raton, passed away Friday October 25, 2013 in Raton, NM. He was born July 5, 1934 in Chania Crete, Greece the son of Jim Pappas ( Demitri Papadomanolakis) and Katherine Tornazakis. At the age of four months the family moved to Raton, N.M. where his father was a partner in the Sweet Shop, makers of fine homemade candy and ice cream. After high school, Mike went to the University of Denver where he earned a degree in accounting. After working as an accountant for a few years he returned to Raton to help operate the Sweet Shop. On August 27, 1962 he married Joy Walker, a “southern belle” from Tennessee. The Sweet Shop began to serve food items as well as selling candy and ice cream. Gradually, the restaurant part of the business grew and the candy business became secondary. In 1973 Mike moved the restaurant to its current location. Mike was involved in more than just the Sweet Shop. He was the mayor of Raton from 1978 to 1983 and enjoyed his political career. At one time he and several Raton residents leased an airplane and he learned to fly. Mike was a big Bronco fan and in 1978 when the Denver Broncos went to the Super Bowl, he helped fly the plane to New Orleans to see the game. An interest in computers led to the writing of a newsletter for restaurants, “Computer Foodservice and You”. That led to the writing of a small book, “Eat Food, Not Profits”. He continued by writing a book about the history of Raton which he loved, “Raton History Mystery and More”. Mike loved visiting with everyone and continued to work until April 2013 when he was diagnosed with colon cancer.
He was preceded in death by his wife Joy in 2011, his parents, Jim and Katherine, and a younger brother, Nick. Mike is survived by his brother, John of Denver, CO., daughter Ann Marie, and grandson Matthew and several nephews, nieces, and cousins.
One of Mike’s favorite things was potluck dinners. So in lieu of flowers the family requests you bring your favorite covered dish and join them for a celebration of Mikes life Saturday November 2, 2013 from 2:00 P.M. until 4:00 P.M. at the Sweet Shop in Raton.
Arrangements and celebration of love for Mike J. Pappas are under the direction of the Yaksich-Long Funeral Home of Raton.