Michael True, 1933-2019, RIP

posted by Mike on May 1st, 2019

Michael True, Worcester activist, writer, and educator, has died. His intelligence, diligence, generosity, and kindness will not be forgotten by those who knew him.

His funeral and burial will be in Minnesota. We are told will be a celebration of his life in Worcester June 1 at Mechanics Hall, but no details yet.

Official obituary, Minneapolis Star Tribune

True, Michael Daniel: Lover of life, born in Oklahoma City, OK 11/8/1933 died at 85, on 4/28/2019 in St. Paul, MN. Michael was a prolific writer of books, essays and letters. He was a teacher and activist, loved good conversation, friends, food and music. He grew up in Lawton, OK with his 2 brothers and “Mother and Daddy” whom he cherished. He was a Sooner at Oklahoma University, received his MA in English at the University of Minnesota. Michael met his wife, Mary Pat Delaney, in St. Paul. They married in 1958 at St. Luke’s Parish. Mike went to Duke University for his Ph. D. He spent the majority of his life in his beloved city of Worcester, MA where he taught English, and later Peace Studies at Assumption College (1965-2000).

Worcester Telegram & Gazette: Michael True, activist, poet, educator, mourned

Michael True believed in peace, the power of art and poetry, and the worth of his adopted hometown, the city of Worcester.

“But he didn’t just talk about ideas,” said his son, John True. “He implemented them. He was an activist.”

Mr. True, also a renowned author, poet and historian who taught at Assumption College and in classrooms around the world, passed away last week in Minneapolis at the age of 85. He is survived by his wife, Mary Pat, six children, 10 grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

Mr. True was a central figure in Worcester’s nonviolence community, taking part in protests big and small, for causes well-known and unsung. Those who knew him remembered a man committed to what he believed in, willing to risk health and reputation, and who, despite his illustrious resume, never looked down on anyone.

David O’Brien: Remembering Michael True, the heart and soul of Worcester’s peace movement

Michael True, Worcester peacemaker, poet, historian, interfaith organizer, teacher of English and model Worcester citizen is gone. He passed away last week in Minneapolis where he and Mary Pat moved just a few weeks ago to join three of their six children who have settled in Mary Pat’s hometown.

Mike and Mary Pat were among the very first persons my wife Joanne and I met when we arrived in Worcester 50 years ago this fall. Almost before we unpacked Mike had updated us on local peace actions and drawn us into the ecumenical “floating parish.” We learned that this open-ended community had succeeded the legendary “Phoenix” storefront as home to local social activists — and lots of children.

From that period of crisis around the Vietnam War through the Plowshares and nuclear freeze movements to the 21st century resistance to unwise wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, Mike was consistent and courageous, the heart and soul of Worcester’s peace movement.

2011 “508” interview about the Center for Nonviolent Solutions:

2006 “The American Tradition of Nonviolence”:

2008 “Snow Ghost Community Show” interview about Tom Lewis:

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