Michael deployed on his final mission on 28 October 2020. Born 67 years ago in South Providence to the late Peter and Lois (Cummings) Bulawka he resided there until 1962 when the family moved to East Greenwich. He is survived by his personal angel and wife of 45 years, the former Sheryl Mixner of Warwick. He is also survived by his brother David (Susan) and sister Karen Lionberg (Donald). His niece Jennifer Macari (Wayne) and nephews Charles and Douglas Lionberg.
Michael was blessed to have a close relationship to his wife’s family, Marylyn Stravinsky (Joseph), Erma Celani, Jo Anne Faciano (Anthony) and James Mixner (Julie). He loved and adored their children and thought of them as his own: the late Joseph P. Stravinsky and Veronica Stravinsky; Lawrence and Andrew Celani; Jessica, Jenna, John and Janelle Mixner, and great-nieces and great-nephews: Jamie, Leah, Liberty and Joseph Stravinsky, and Cpl Xavier Acosta.
Michael graduated from EGHS in 1971, enlisted in the USMC PLC Program in 1972, graduated from Norwich University, was married and commissioned a 2nd Lt in 1975.
His Marine Corps tours of duty included being stationed on both the east and west coasts of the U.S. as well as Okinawa, Japan and made multiple deployments from each location. He was the Operations Officer for the Ground Combat Element of the first Special Operations Capable Marine Expeditionary Unit, which was deployed from the west coast to the Pacific and Indian Ocean operating areas. Combined with his travels as Operations Officer for Marine Security Battalion; staff officer for the Current Operations, Combatting Terrorism Branch on the Joint Staff; Plans and Policy Officer for the Commander Marines Forces Pacific, Marine Forces Korea, and Marine Forces Central Command; and a Joint Doctrine Development Officer at the Navy Warfare Development Command; he visited more than 60 countries.
He retired from the Marine Corps in 2001 to Warwick, RI. In November 2001 he returned to service as a contractor and later government employee developing and revising joint doctrine for the employment of Joint and Combined Forces to meet the evolving environment. Due to health reasons he retired for good in 2012. His love of God, his wife Sheryl and his Country combined with the love of his extended family made his life full and content. In lieu of flowers a donation can be made to a charity of your choice.
Visitation, Thursday, 3 – 7 pm, in the Russell J. Boyle and Son Funeral Home, 142 Centerville Rd., Warwick. Relatives and friends are invited to attend a Mass of Christian Burial on Friday at 10 am in St. Gregory the Great Church, 360 Cowesett Rd., Warwick. Burial in the RI Veterans Cemetery will be private.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Lt. Col Michael Bulawka USMC (Ret), please visit our floral store.