1935 - 2016
Mike was born on January 2, 1935 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and left us on the morning of November 7th, 2016. He leaves behind a loving and large family including wife, Carol; sons: Stephen and Christopher; daughter, Stephanie; grandchildren: Wyatt, Ethan, Nellie, George, Travis, Sara, Jack, Michael and John; sister, Patricia; daughter-in-law, Kimmie. Mike was preceded in death by his father, Clarence John Dillon and mother, Nell Gregory Fletcher. Mike's legacy has touched the lives of countless people worldwide. He revolutionized the ammunition reloading industry and made it what it is today. Mike also redesigned and manufactured the M134 Mini Gun that is now in service in the United States and foreign military forces. As a passionate aviator, he flew for TWA as a 2nd officer for 13 years and later made a name for himself as a writer/photographer for Air Progress Magazine. He is recognized by some as being the one who started the warbird restoration movement in the 1960's with his P-40 Warhawk. His forever love of flying continued with the restoration of a TT-1 Pinto jet, 3 T-34A military trainers and a UH-1H Huey helicopter.
Mike's dedication to his family, his customers, and this country was exemplary. We will never forget the impact that he has had on us all. We take comfort knowing he is flying in the blue skies of heaven above. Donations can be made in Mike's memory to: National Rifle Association https://home.nra.org/ (Handloading Education Endowment and Military and Veterans' Affairs Endowment) Alzheimer's Association http://www.alz.org/
*Published in The Arizona Republic on Nov. 13, 2016