Adam Michael Berger was a loving son, brother, uncle, and friend. He was a light in so many lives; his kindness, openness, and empathy were cherished by family, friends, coworkers, and those he only briefly crossed paths with. On March 4, 2017, he passed suddenly from this world into the arms of the Lord well before his time, leaving a legacy of love for us to remember him by.
Adam was born on February 6, 1990, to Mary and Michael Berger, joining his older sister Kathryn at their home on the quiet, wooded cul de sac of Grace Court in Northville, Michigan. So many neighbors remember him zipping around the court in his motorized Batman car, proudly turning circles with his makeshift bath towel cape flowing from his shoulders. The family spent summers on remote Birch Island in Canada, enjoying nature and the simple charms of their rustic cabin together.
At a young age, he developed a passion for football watching Barry Sanders and the Detroit Lions, collecting trading cards and memorizing statistics for players from around the league. He also began a lifelong passion for gaming, starting with the iconic Marathon, which he spent days working over with his parents’ support in the time before strategy guides and the internet. Many hours were spent fighting battles, winning hockey games, running raids, and defeating Sith Lords to save the universe. This passion connected him with friends both at home and all across the world, as he developed important and lasting friendships through the internet playing Counterstrike and World of Warcraft during middle and high school.
His passion for gaming developed hand-in-hand with his enthusiasm for technology, and he had spent many years fixing his family’s computer problems before he formally received his Associate’s Degree in Computer Networking Systems from ITT Technical Institute in 2011. He applied this degree to his professional life, working a variety of help desk and network technology roles, combining his natural technical skill with humor, kindness, and a can-do attitude to make a positive impact with those he worked with.
Shortly after receiving his degree, he received a diagnosis that took his life in an unexpected direction: in 2012, at the age of 22, Adam was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Drawing on the unwavering love and support of his family for strength, he courageously battled and defeated this disease. Though six months of grueling chemotherapy treatment, he met the challenges he faced head on, staying positive in the face of the struggle.
While he was fighting cancer, he discovered a new passion that brought him great joy and a sense of achievement for the rest of his life. During his battle, Adam began to explore the world of electronic music production, finding an outlet for his deep love and appreciation of song and sound that first developed playing tuba in the NHS Marching Band. Drawing inspiration from artists like Paul van Dyk and Armin van Buuren, he worked tirelessly to create a musical sound that was unique to him and resonated with others.
Gaming, technology, and music were all passions of Adam’s, but his truest and deepest love was reserved for his family. Moving down to Charlotte, North Carolina, in 2013 to live closer to his sister and brother-in-law, and eventually father and mother, Adam’s quick smile and honest laugh brought joy to those he loved the most. His two nephews, Carson and Owen, adored his silly humor and knowledge of Ninja Turtles and Pokémon, and he spent the last several years of his life surrounded by and embracing his family, who loved him and embraced him back in turn.
Though his life was shorter than any would ever wish, Adam was a bright star that pointed the way towards love for all the people blessed to have met him in their lives. Through his battles with cancer, Chron’s disease, and bipolar disorder, he never let that bright light waver for one brief moment. For that strength, the love he showed to those around him, and so much more, he will truly be missed. In lieu of flowers, the family would like to ask for charitable donations to the Depression & Bipolar Support Alliance in Adam's memory (http://www.dbsalliance.org)
“Stand up for love, empathy, and compassion. It's the best thing we do.”
Adam Michael Berger February 6, 1990 – March 4, 2017
Charitable donations may be made to:
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)
55 E. Jackson Blvd, Suite 490, Chicago IL 60604