Michael “Mike” Craig Royston 45, formerly from the Webster County area, passed away on Monday, June 15, at Cox Hospital, Springfield, after a sudden illness. 

Mike was born Feb. 8, 1975, in Springfield. 

Survivors include his mother, Carolyn Sneath of Hermitage; children Mikelah Underwood of Columbia, Dylan Royston and Tucker of Springfield, Jaden Harleman of Marshfield, MO, Brooke Miller (Dakota) of Fair Grove, MO, Breann Pentecost of Springfield, MO and Cierra Pentecost of Fair Grove MO. His three grandchildren Reagan, Kylie and Geo. Also surviving is his sister Teri Redd (Mike) of Hermitage MO. Nepews and nieces Jesse Jones (Bethany), Cheyanna Jennings (Cody), Taylor Funk (Zach). Great niece and nephews Dusty Jones and Hadley Jones and Will Funk. His Uncle Tony Hulsey and many other cousins and family members. Special long time buddy Kyle Thomas of Seymour MO. Many many other friends from all around the United States.

He is preceded in death by his father, Don Royston; his stepfather, Tom Sneath; his uncle, Doug Hulsey; his aunt Jean Luedde; grandparents Earl and Iona Royston, and Tony and Shirley Hulsey: several cousins and close friends. 

To know this wild and crazy cowboy was to love him. When he was younger, he and his best four legged friend, Dunny, aka “Elvis,” could be found at all the area rope-ins. He and Dunny rode many miles in Fordland and Seymour through the years. 

Mike worked as a plumber for many years, although his favorite "job" was farming. From his childhood years raking hay with our dad until recently, he was most likely found on some old John Deere tractor working the fields ... or maybe just cruising town on one — ya never knew for sure.

Mike was an avid story teller and could keep you rolling and laughing in the floor until your sides hurt with the stories he told. He never met a stranger and he would talk to anyone. 

My big little brother was as ornery as the day is long. He lived life the way he wanted and made many friends along the way. A free spirit who could not be tamed and we would not have wanted him any other way. 

 In the last week I have talked a lot with the most recent friends he made — who also called him family. They called him “Big Mike” and they adored him. They are hurting alongside all of us. In the last few years, we have been told he has helped many people that needed help and that makes our shattered hearts smile. 

The loss of this man will leave a void which can never be filled. We love you Michael, Dad, Papa, Bub, Uncle — may you rest in peace.

 Last but not least, I have to mention who he called his “hateful but beautiful and amazing buddy,” Marti. He asked for us to get her to him when he went into the hospital. He told me he felt safe knowing she was around because she would make sure he was taken care of. Marti, you were so important to him. 

Visitation will be 9 a.m. Wednesday, June 24, with memorial to follow at 10 a.m., at Butler Funeral Home in Bolivar. Burial will be at Dooley Bend Cemetery, near Pomme de Terre Lake, following the service.