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Willard Louis Steele

Obituary for Willard Louis Steele

August 12, 1949 - December 1, 2020
Wilmington, Vermont | Age 71

Loving Husband, Father, and Friend


Willard "Bill" Louis Steele became a New Yorker on August 12,1949. In many ways, Bill was like a great cup of coffee. Coffee has long symbolized intellect, creativity, and a touch of revolution. Since he was, without a doubt, all of these things one could not be in his company without having an "oh shit" moment. His confident stance, the way he never backed down, and his sheer authority will not be forgotten.

Mr. Steele worked hard as a master electrician for 47 years. He takes with him an undefinable amount of knowledge and a work ethic that can't be quantified. His work boots, strong hands, and mind literally lit up the Deerfield Valley – a place he called home for 33 years and the world headquarters of Steele Electric. He remembered every one of the jobs he completed in Wilmington and surrounding areas. Going forth, should you want to reach Steele Electric, gaze upon the lights at Hayford Field.

Bill would want you to know the numbers that were important to him, starting with his six children: Patrick, Andrea, John, Elizabeth, Laura and Christine. His children loved being seen by his bright blue eyes, which shone when he talked about each of his childrens' accomplishments with their careers and families. He'd also want you to know with pleasure that he was a grandfather to nine grandchildren: Magnus, Teagan, Lars, Erik, Aiden, Victoria, George, William and Olea. For 11 years he fought multiple myeloma; 11 years longer than his healthcare providers Dr. Lowrey, Diane Stearns and all the nurses and staff at Dartmouth Hitchcock ever thought. (Should you want to make a contribution in Bill's honor, please give to the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation.) The number three signifies the beginning, middle, and the end. Therefore, you must know of his three close friends Terry, Jenner and Tony. He'd want you to know of his one great love, Deb, whom he married on September 26, 2020 after 16 adventurous years of partnership. He couldn't have done any of it without her. Her care for him was a love song which they will continue to dance to beneath shining stars.

Bill never collected objects, instead he collected memories with his family and friends both near and far. One way he would do this is by pausing (even halfway through) his favorite "flicks" or movies and later by simply riding his BMW Beamer motorcycle to destinations as nearby as the local fruit orchard or a spontaneous trip to "Wally World." Throughout his life he sought adventure and was always up for a drive. Bill enjoyed sitting on the steps of the CVS on the corner of Duval and Front Streets in Key West, strolling Kew Gardens in London, taking in the beautiful terrains of Mallorca, Iceland, Kefalonia, and atop Cannon Mountain where he will forever look out upon us all.

Like coffee, Bill's sense of humor was comforting, bold, and could warm you up from the inside out. He was always telling stories that began with, "Well you know..." Countless memories have been recalled of the way he would tell you something just believable enough that you'd go with it, only to hear his whistling laugh when you later figured out he was messing with you. For 30 years he maintained that his wedding song was "Purple People Eater," though it recently clicked for his children that maybe he was joking?

His childhood included many dogs as his parents Ivan "Jack" Glouster Wadsworth Steele and Mary Anne Steele raised and showed Dachshunds and Great Danes. He was the person his most recent dogs, Smokey and Ozzy, thought he was: sensitive, playful, caring, observant, and really great at littering the yard with treats to hunt down.

He never liked expiration dates and so he went long before his time. To honor his life, sit and savor a cup of coffee (he took his with a splash of 2% milk) and have a long conversation, "so to say," with all of those who mean the most to you.

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Cremation Society of New Hampshire

57 High St.
Brattleboro, VT 05301
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