Dean Michael “Mike” Little

Dean Michael Little, 75, passed away on Sunday, February 6, 2022. He was a native of Hampton and had been a resident of Bena, VA for 42 years.

He was the President and Owner of Tire City, Inc., Newport News, VA. Mike was a hard-working man, always on the road at 4:00 a.m. just in case a customer showed up early. His customers were also long-time friends. From the time of his teens, he had a deep love for cars and made certain his cars were always as pristine as his attire. Even though he was a serious businessman, his family always came first.

Mike attended Wythe Elementary School in Hampton, Frederick Military Academy, and was Captain of Company C, Cadet of the Year, and graduated with zero demerits. He attended Carson-Newman College in Tennessee and Christopher Newport College in Newport News before devoting his life to the family tire business. He was a 44-year member of Monitor Lodge #197 AF&AM in Hampton, Virginia, and was a volunteer at Wythe Fire and Rescue in Hampton.

Mike was preceded in death by his parents, L. Frank Little and Claudia Britt Little. He is survived by his wife, Joanne, the love of his life that never faded in their nearly 48 years together. It was rare to see one without the other. He is also survived by his son, Dean Michael Little, Jr. (Mikey), and his two grandsons, Dean Michael Little III (Little Mikey) and Brantley Kenneth Little. Mike’s family shared their life with a very special person, Jamie Lee Green who they always called the “stepson”. He is also survived by his brothers L. Frank Little Jr. (Cynthia) and Richard Wayne Little and sisters, Claudia Little Rosen (Whit) and Cindi Little Townsend (Tom).

Very active in Mikey and Jamie’s life, Mike was a coach for their Fall Ball, Baseball, and All-Star teams. He was always proud of his son, Mikey who is an avid golfer. He had a special relationship with his grandson, Little Mikey, who was his “Buddy” since his birth, and they had tremendous respect for each other.

The family will receive friends on Monday, February 14 from 5:00 to 7:30 p.m. at Peninsula Funeral Home. A funeral service will be held on Tuesday, February 15 at 11:00 a.m., with Masonic Rites, at the funeral home with interment following at 1:00 p.m. in Providence Baptist Church Cemetery, 3501 Providence Road, Hayes, VA 23072. The CDC highly recommends masks for inside gatherings.

Arrangements are under the care of Peninsula Funeral Home, 11144 Warwick Blvd., Newport News, VA 23601.


  1. Joyce and Bud D'Bene

    Mike was a very special man and a good man. We go back a long ways with him and his wife. It is so sad to see that the Lord has taken one of our special and good man, but he has a reason. There has been many laughs when we were together. Joanne we are so very sorry and our hearts are with you and your family. A dear friend and a brother in the Masonic Order.
    Blessings, Bud and Joyce D’Bene of Yorktown, VA

  2. YLS Inc. Landscape Contractor

    As a longtime customer of Tire City, Mike always took great care of our fleet’s tire needs. He was always there for us when we were in need of having our trucks back on the road to service our landscape customers. All of our shop managers since the beginning loved to work with Mike.
    Our deep and sincere condolences to the entire Tire City Family and especially to Joanne (who is just as dedicated and hardworking) as well as Mikey and Little Mikey.
    May your happy memories help get you through this difficult time.
    from all of us at YLS Inc.

  3. Jean and David Kelpin

    We are so very sorry to hear the sad news of Mike’s passing. Please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

  4. Michael E. Brookman

    So sorry to hear Mike Little has passed away. He was a good man. I have such fond memories of time spent at the James River Rod and Gun Club with him and others during work parties. Mike was a close longtime friend of my father-in-law E.T. Garth Jr. Mike was always happy and always had a joke to tell. He will be sorely missed. My love to you Joanne.

  5. Dewey Evans

    So very sorry to hear of Mike’s passing. Mike was a such a nice person. Our thoughts and prayers are with Joanne and the family. Mike and I were at Frederick Military Academy together.
    Dewey (FMA Class 1967) and Virginia Evans

  6. Pat Quinn

    Thank you for taking care of my car tires problems all these years. I know God needs you now, but we all will miss you down hear. Sorry to the family loss.

  7. Christiebradley

    Joanne & family, Sending prayers & our deepest sympathy to you & the family. Mike was a hard working man who couldn’t have treated his customers any better. He was a special friend to so many of us. I will always think of him when I eat apple butter from Amish country. He loved it & whenever Jim & I went up there I always brought him a jar back. Know that he is at peace. Christie & Jim Bradley

  8. Rev Myrtle Dobson

    “What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and grieves to bear, what a privilege it is to carry everything to God in prayer”
    Ms.Joanne, our family was most sadden to hear of Mike’s transitioning. Words can not express the love my children and grandchildren have for you all. I pray God wraps His arms around you and the family during this time of grief and that you will all have joy in knowing that Mike is sleeping with the angels. Much love, George, Myrtle, Perry, Qudarro (Tony) Robyn, Mariah and Taylor.

  9. Paul Hansen

    I am sorry to hear of Mikes passing … Mike handled our family cars for many years and there was never a time he was not behind that counter with a smile … Early or late six (6) days a week… he was an awesome guy ,he will be greatly missed .. Our prayers and thoughts are with the whole family…

  10. Dwayne M Davis

    Joanne and Family just today 2/21 I am sorry and devastated to learn of Mike’s passing. I was just absolutely in shock. I met Mike and Joanne at Tire City after I had been assigned to the City of Newport News as the State Police Trooper of which I supervised Mike, his business, and the other licensed motor vehicle state inspectors of which Mike also held a reputable license.
    Mike and Joanne were always so welcoming even on the busiest of days. Mike and his team also provided repairs on my personal vehicles and friends I had recommended. I loved Mike’s jokes and his comments. Any time I was having a difficult day and went into the station Mike could always get a smile from me and Joanne never let me leave without sitting down for a quick prayer that just brought out the sunshine. Joanne, in my heart I know, feel, and see Mike adorned in his robe of white walking the streets of pure Gold in the Holy Kingdom of the Most High. Anyone with an Android cellphone or a computer having internet service can pull up the Country Gospel singers “The Statler Brothers” as they sing the song “A Beautiful Life” will know the real Mike Little and his Family. Everyday they do those deeds for Anyone ! Mike I will be along shortly. I will miss you deeply.
    Master State Police Trooper(ret.) Dwayne M Davis
    Commonwealth of Virginia, Dept. of State Police

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