Michelle Wilson Starks was born October 1, 1961 to Nelson and Susie (Oden) Wilson in Chicago, IL. She was the baby of six children. Her parents and two older brothers, Medford and Ronald, preceded her in death. Michelle grew up in Maywood, IL and began attending Irving School at age five. In second grade, she began taking piano and violin lessons and fell in love with music. While in 5th grade, Michelle was honored by the Illinois Music Association. Her passion for music continued throughout her time as a member of the high school orchestra. In 1979, Michelle graduated from Proviso East High School and briefly continued her education at Illinois State University and Triton College..
During the summer of 1975, Michelle became a member of the First Baptist Church of Melrose Park, IL. She was the pianist for the Baptist Training Union, Missionary Society, and Young Adult Choir. Michelle continued to focus on her spiritual growth and development throughout her life. She became a member of Living Word Christian Center in 2006 and taught youth ministry classes.
Michelle became a mother in 1992 with the birth of her first son, Eric. Three years later, she was blessed with another baby boy, Justin. Michelle would dedicate the rest of her life to being the best mom possible. Her boys helped motivate her to stay strong when she faced some of her toughest battles. Michelle began her professional career as a Sales Agent for Allstate Insurance in 1985. Michelle was with State Farm for more than 20 years as a sales specialist. She became one of Chicago’s top agents, was recognized both locally and nationally for her success, and began owning her own office in 2007. Michelle was honored by the Operation Uplift Center in 2015 and was named a MLK Hometown Dreamweaver.
Her career would continue to be a major part of her life until her retirement from State Farm in October 2018. Michelle loved life and could light up a room with her smile and laugh. She always had good taste in food and was extremely fashionable. In the spring, Michelle would always focus her attention on her garden, a hobby she shared and enjoyed with her mom. She loved to swim, go bicycling, and travel to new places. But above all, Michelle loved to talk. She was an amazing story-teller and always knew just the right things to say.
Michelle will be loved and remembered by her two sons, Eric and Justin; sisters Gwendolyn and Patricia; nephew Darrell; Nieces Kim and Tashona; other relatives, a host of clients and supportive friends.