Michael Embrey, who taught, worked beside, and befriended beekeepers across Maryland and the world, passed away on May 18, 2019 after sustaining injuries from a serious car accident three weeks earlier. He is survived by his loving wife YanCai Embrey. Hundreds gathered for a service of remembrance on Thursday, May 30 at the University of MD Wye Research and Education Center in Queenstown.
There are very few beekeepers in Maryland who were not helped directly or indirectly by Mike's many decades of teaching, mentoring, answering questions, speaking to clubs, assisting in individual apiaries, and even bringing his expertise to over a dozen foreign countries. He is fondly remembered for insisting that all questions are worthwhile and important, and for listening to beekeepers and their concerns, then helping them (and their bees) to grow in strength and vigor.
Mike received citations from two presidents, Bush and Obama, for his work in apiculture. He worked for the University of Maryland for almost 4 decades, performing extraordinary extension work while also managing his own apiary business, Tuckahoe Apiaries. He also worked as a volunteer with the Farmer to Farmer (F2F) program in places as far afield as Bangladesh.
The photos featured here are just a small sample of Mike's activities: teaching students at Washington College how to light a smoker, volunteering at fairs, speaking to clubs, teaching "Beekeeping 101."
His endless energy, generosity, patience and insight will never be forgotten, and will always be missed. Our hearts go out to his family and his colleagues, and to the community that will feel his absence for many years to come.