Michael Raymond Vraney

MICHAEL RAYMOND VRANEY

December 29, 1957 to January 2, 2014

mike_vraney     Mike Vraney, 56, of Lake Forest Park, WA passed away on January 2, 2014 after a long heroic battle with lung cancer. Mike was born on December 29, 1957 to George Vraney and Nancy Crossett in Seattle. He spent most of his life in the Seattle area.

     Mike is best known as the founder of Something Weird Video, a nostalgic mail order video company and film archive. Even as a child, Mike loved movies. During his teenage years, he worked at the Bel-Kirk Drive-In, and then later as a projectionist at the Green Parrot and Apple Theaters in Seattle. Over the past 20 years Mike went in search of as many old, unusual, obscure, and lost low budget exploitation movies as he could, and preserved them for prosperity. Mike amassed thousands of rare films and had them transferred to video so that people could relive the good old days of going to the drive-in or grindhouse theater, in their own homes. Legendary exploiteers David F. Friedman and Dan Sonney called Mike “the forty-first thief,” which to him was the ultimate compliment and recognition for his accomplishments. Thanks to Mike’s dedication and genuine enthusiasm for forgotten cinema,  a wonderful world of weird films is available on vhs, dvd, blu-ray, cable television and via the internet.

     Prior to Something Weird, Mike was involved in the early Seattle punk rock music scene. He was a partner in Modern Productions, the group who started Seattle’s seminal rock venue, The Showbox, in 1979. Mike then went on to manage such well-known bands as The Dead Kennedys, TSOL, and Seattle’s own The Accused. Mike also worked at Time Travelers, a comics/records/skateboard shop located in downtown Seattle during the 1980s. Mike always seemed to be at the forefront of whatever was cool and happening.

     Mike’s second greatest passion in life was collecting old comics, vintage toys, movie memorabilia, and pop cultural ephemera. He enjoyed going to the swap meet and had a magical ability for finding great stuff. When he wasn’t working, collecting, or telling great stories, Mike spent quality time with his family, watching old movies, reading, and going to Hawaii on vacation.

    Mike is survived by his adoring wife and business partner Lisa Petrucci Vraney, and his two beloved children Mark Vraney and Danielle Vraney of Lake Forest Park. He also leaves behind his mother Nancy Earp of Friday Harbor, sister Dianna Vraney of Friday Harbor, brother Mark Vraney of Edmonds, and stepsister Linda Richards of Creston, BC.

     In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made in Mike’s name to the Lung Cancer Alliance http://www.lungcanceralliance.org/ways-to-give/

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