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[ Personal Narratives ]

*Eulogizing my Big Brother*

*(the pic above is of Steve and me sleeping on the couch in 1993; he was using my heiny as a pillow)*…   

The reason I am following up the account of my dear brother’s death from extreme heroin withdrawal with the Eulogy I wrote for him is because I want people to have a better idea of exactly who Steven really was. Also, had I not written this following piece, no one from my family would have spoken on his behalf at his service. Understandably, our parents were still beside themselves in grief and mourning; the Pastor gave a beautiful biography on Steve’s life based on facts that my parents relayed to him. I then motioned for my elder brother to speak, due to the fact that he is older than I. When he began to speak, he commented on how it was a bit fitting that we had his service on the anniversary of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, (10/17), and that they, along with our Father, Grandfather, and Uncle were all at the baseball game getting ready to enjoy game 3 of the Battle of the Bay World Series between the SF Giants and the Oakland A’s when it hit.. That is when my brother couldn’t speak anymore. His lack of words spoke to his brokenness. It was then my turn, and boy was I glad I prepared something… (sidenote: we had a lovely outdoor service for him at our Grandparents’ 80 acre ranch here on the Central Coast, CA).

“On behalf of my family thank you all for coming today. Seeing faces from both sides of our family gathered at my brother Steve’s favorite place in the world once again is comforting, and I can feel Steve smiling because of it… Seeing the beautiful faces of dear old friends from long ago is a symbol of exactly who Steve was, and the steadfast friends you were, as well. He cared about each one of you very much. Thank you, everyone, for coming to show your love for Steven: a Son, Grandson, Brother, Cousin, Friend, Nephew, Uncle, and Father. The happiest day of Steve’s life was the day he became a Father to his son, C.T.

Thank you for coming to show your love for my parents; your presence alone says more than any amount of words could ever. It is a testimony to how very loved Steve really was; that is priceless.

Its been said that your siblings are your first friends. That could not be more true of my brothers and me. Steve took the time to teach me how to read and write the letters of the alphabet and numbers 1-10 before kindergarten so that I would be ahead of the game, and I was. I have always been thankful for that. We played together; we fought over who could sit on Grandpa D’s lap- in the end Grandpa would always have a solution: “There’s enough lap for all three of you”. Steve always had an open ear, solid advice, and open arms for a sister who needed no one but him, because he understood me, and I him. I could always rely on a big, soft hug from my brother Steve whenever I saw him. He loved unconditionally. My family and I loved Steve unconditionally..

My brother Steve was a born-again Christian, and is with the Lord in Paradise now. The Bible talks about loving siblings: “Those who love their brothers and sisters live in the light”. (1 John 2:10). I know that no matter where Steve was- we loved him and he loved us. Therefore, he always lived in the light.

Steve had a kind, caring, considerate spirit about him. No matter what or when- he always had time to help a friend in need. Steve was highly intelligent and was studying to be an addictions counselor. If he had been able to finish that dream of his he would have made the best therapist I’ve ever met. With a heart as big and empathetic as his- he would have been the best.

Steve was an excellent chef and baker. Everything he ever made was delicious. He could make just about anything, and the whole house would be salivating, waiting for the call to ‘Come N Get It!’ He was giving, sharing, and selfless.

On behalf of my children: (names changed) Nate, 16 1/2, Dylan, 14 & Colby, 14 they would like to say: “We love our Uncle Steve very much, and its hard to believe that we aren’t going to see him anymore. He was very involved in our lives, and came to our baseball games to cheer us on. ‘Nate’ says he is going to miss getting text messages from Steve after football games telling him what an awesome job he did, and how ‘bleeping’ proud of him he was. .. We know that Uncle Steve is happy and healthy now, and we are going to see him again one day. Until then we will miss him very much, as he was a very big part of all of our lives..”

The following quote was on Steve’s Facebook page, and I thought it was just so perfectly fitting for my brother to put it up- like it was pulled right out of his mind:

“Life is so ironic. It takes sadness to know happiness, noise to appreciate silence, and absence to value presence”.

Steven David experienced ALL of the above, but more than that he experienced the unconditional love of two of the greatest parents anyone could ask for.. I now ask all of you to keep my parents in your thoughts and prayers, as they navigate this infrequently traveled path. Let us lift them up in our feelings and words… His journey has just begun.. Thank you.