By Marybeth Tomka
The Gault School, TARL, the Texas community as well as the larger North American archeological community lost a dynamic and cheerful friend in J. Michael Quigg on Monday December 7th after a short battle with cancer. I was asked to write this short tribute because of my association with him these last 30 plus years.
I first met Mike, or Quigg to many, in 1987 when he came to Texas to work for Prewitt and Associates (PAI) bringing his Northern Plains experience with bison hunters. He quickly became a friend, a colleague first to my husband Steve who was also working for PAI, and then one of the managers I worked with at TRC (then Mariah). Others will write of his many contributions to archeological reports and archeological interpretations, but I choose to write of his personality which allowed him to be an equally talented team leader, team member, mentor, and friend.
As a team leader he would seek my advice as the team member with expertise in lab and curation matters; as a fellow team member and mentor we would discuss options for moving forward on projects; and as a friend he was always there with supportive words and at times great hugs. I came to see him as a brother.
After many years of not working together, he came back to TARL when Gault did two years ago, and once again he was a colleague, mentor and friend. It was a bright day when Gault moved back into TARL quarters bringing this wonderful man.
My own family joins the Gault family in mourning this excellent archeologist, he shared his birthday with my daughter, was godfather to my son, and true friend to both Steve and I. You are already missed and will be remembered for your outstanding archeology and kindness to all.