This obituary originally appeared on Memorial Funeral Home.

Michael Riordan Cottrell, 81, of Newport, RI, passed away peacefully at his home on Wednesday, April 29, 2020 after a battle with brain cancer. Michael was born in 1938 in Newport, RI, to James Benedict Cottrell III and Elizabeth Vernon Cottrell.

Michael graduated from St. Georges School in Middletown and went on to study at Columbia University and receive his BA from Bryant College. He served in the U.S. Army and was employed by Fidelity Investments in Boston. He took early retirement and returned to his beloved Newport, where he enjoyed going to the beach, reading, and exercising. A student of Newport history, Michael was a popular tour guide for the Preservation Society for many years, and visitors would often ask for him by name because of his reputation for being exceedingly knowledgeable and entertaining. On his off days, he could often be seen walking along first beach or reading in the Redwood Library and could always be counted on to share a laugh and a story. He will be greatly missed by all of his family and friends.

Michael is survived by his sister Elizabeth “Chichi” Cottrell McKown of Vero Beach, Florida, and was “Uncle Mike” to his many wonderful nieces and nephews and their families: Kate Bradford and Roger Scholl of Chappaqua, New York; William and Joellen Bradford of Westport, Connecticut; Pamela Nichols of Winsted, Connecticut; Nina and Cary Smith of Farmington, Connecticut; Sarah and Aaron Dube of Bristol, Connecticut; Richard Knowles of Bristol, Connecticut; Elizabeth Briggs of Sarasota, Florida; Wendy and Brentnall Powell of Hopkinton, New Hampshire; and William Briggs III of Boston.

In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his sisters Pamela Cottrell Bradford and Virginia Cottrell Knowles. A private memorial celebration will be held at a later date. The family would also like to thank Michael’s extraordinary caregivers from Balanced Life Solutions, including Nancy, Lisa, Stephanie and the whole amazing crew.

Memorial donations may be made to the Aquidneck Land Trust or the Redwood Library.

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