Michael Vincent Claps of Greenport passed from this world on July 23, 2020, surrounded by his loving family, after a courageous battle with brain cancer.
Born May 6, 1984, in Southampton, Michael graduated from Greenport High School in 2002. A gifted athlete, he played football and was on the wrestling team. He was also an avid sportsman — snowboarding, skiing and surfing — and had a lifelong passion for fishing. He served as first mate on The Challenger, a charter fishing boat operated by his father, Dr. Vincent Claps. Father and son spent many hours sailing the waters from Greenport to Montauk and beyond in search of the “big one.”
After graduating from Providence College in 2006, Michael pursued a degree in international transportation management and graduated from New York Maritime College with a master’s degree in 2008. He started working with Bouchard Chemicals and was soon recruited by Stolt-Nielsen. After further honing his skills in ship brokering, he was recruited by Navig8, one of the world’s largest shipping and management services, and was transferred to Singapore, where his talents would be on display internationally. While there he met Theresa, the love of his life, whom he subsequently married in 2019. Their mutual love for travel fueled adventures to Sri Lanka and other exotic locales and they spent much of their free time exploring, surfing and fishing.
But it was his work in the shipping industry that caught the eye of Koch Industries, which recruited him as a freight trader in Singapore and relocated him to Houston, Texas. It was while he was there that he first fell ill and would begin treatment for his illness. After a short time, Michael then returned to the North Fork to be with his family for the rest of his days.
Michael’s love of people and his laid-back charm endeared him to many and he leaves behind a diverse group of friends around the world who will miss him dearly. He is survived by his wife, Theresa (Tan) Claps; his sister, Christina McElroy (Tim); his two nieces, Morgan and Nola McElroy; and his parents, Vincent and Barbara (Helinski) Claps.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to East End Hospice (631-288-8410) or to the Musella Foundation for Brain Tumor Research (888-295-4740).
This is a paid notice.