Longtime Berkshire County resident Michael Timothy Platt died Jan. 8 at his home on West Avenue in Great Barrington. He is survived by his brother, Donald Platt, of West Lafayette, Indiana; his sister-in-law, Dana Roeser, of West Lafayette; his two nieces Eleanor Platt of Geneva, Switzerland, and Lucy Platt of Falls Church, Virginia; and by his “family” at Leander House, especially his devoted care provider Jennie Reins and his best friend Marshall Russell.
Michael was born June 2, 1959, with trisomy 21 (Down syndrome) in Coral Gables, Florida. His parents, the Rev. Donald Platt and Martha Luecht Platt, decided to have him live with them and cared for him until they were in their eighties. With his family, he moved in 1961 to Staten Island, New York City, and lived there for seven years. In 1968, the family went to Sheffield, Massachusetts, where Michael’s father became pastor of Christ Church, now Christ Trinity Church. Thus began Michael’s long association with that church where he was a parishioner from 1968 to 1981, and again from 2001 to 2018. After his father’s retirement in 1981, Michael lived with his mother and father in Salisbury, Connecticut. He spent the summers with them at Twin Lakes and loved rowing his family’s rowboat.
In 2001 Michael became a resident of Leander House in Great Barrington. He learned to ride horses at Blue Rider Stables, participated in art classes at Community Access to the Arts and eurhythmy classes at Christ Trinity Church, and worked three afternoons a week at the weavery at Stanton House. Michael had a lifelong passion for trains and would always stop weaving when the trains passed.
Michael was blessed with a sweet and trusting disposition and was universally loved by his caregivers, family and friends throughout his life. Jennie Reins of Leander House, his primary caregiver for the last 16 years, nursed him faithfully and expertly through his final illness.
A memorial service for Michael Platt will be held at Christ Trinity Church, 180 Main St., Sheffield, on a date to be announced. In lieu of flowers, those wishing may make donations to CATA, 40 Railroad St., Great Barrington, MA 01230 and/or Blue Rider Stables, 15 Farm Ln., Great Barrington, MA 01230. BIRCHES-ROY FUNERAL HOME, 33 South St., Great Barrington, is entrusted with arrangements. Condolences may be made through birchesroyfuneralservices.com.