Gene Thomas Steadham, 85
Born: September 24, 1926
Died: Saturday, February 4, 2012
I lost another friend on Saturday, February 4, 2012.
I first met Gene about 1987. He was a long time friend of my best friend John Hastings. Gene was a master oil field “driller” and had known John for many years. I got to know Gene better when we went fishing in Venezuela a few years later.
I saw him infrequently, mostly during some hunting or fishing expedition. We got to know each other better every time. We went elk hunting several times and he went with us several times on our annual Colorado fishing trips.
Gene was famous for his “stories” which he loved to tell. He often told the same story, but no one seemed to mind. He talked about his grandchildren a lot, especially L.J. He was lovingly called “Pop.” He enjoyed his family. His family enjoyed him.
Gene lost his wife several years ago and to everyone’s surprise, he bought property in an isolated spot in West Texas. John and I went to visit him and he showed us around. He had a few cows and a rather large irrigated wheat field. We worried about him being alone and isolated. His faithful son-in-law Terry looked after him from his home in Graham, where Gene had lived for many years.
Gene had health problems as he got older and required more attention and trips to Wichita Falls for treatment. He had prostate cancer. Gene and I had yet another common bond. Gene was 9 years older than I.
Gene got down, and sold his farm and moved back to Graham so that his daughter Sandy and Terry could look after him. His health gradually got worse and he spent his last days in a nursing home environment.
I kept up with Gene mostly through his great friend George Walbert. George visited him fairly often, and several times drove Gene to fishing trips to Colorado as he got older.
I was sorry that due to my rather inflexible work schedule with the VA, I was unable to attend his funeral service.
I will miss him and am proud to have known him.
February 27, 2012