Among the characters I met during my R.E.M. tenure, Mark "Microwave" Mytrowitz stood out like a jewel. He worked as Peter Buck's guitar tech and had done so for Steve Morse of the Dixie Dregs before that. Microwave was a big ol' teddy bear of a guy, but he could inflate to seemingly twice his size when something or someone around him was being threatened. The quality of his work was nonpareil, and his dedication was strong and true.
Microwave was never anything less than sweet and kind to me, and I appreciated his friendship more than I ever got to tell him.
At one gig on the Green World Tour, the opening act was Micro and the Melons, with Microwave leading the crew band through "Get Up" and "Wild Thing". He was so pleased and proud.
I just read his obituary today. Micro died on February 15 at the age of 52. He will always be loved and missed by me and the people he worked with. Godspeed.