Michael David Stephens
June 29, 1954 – May 10, 2023
He is survived by his wife, Barb; children, Brian (Sara) and Bridget; grandchildren: Levi, Cameron and Everly; siblings: Jan Penton, John Jr. (Kay), Jim (Becky) and Pat Stephens; many cousins, nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Gladys Stephens, Sr.; brother-in-law, Harold Penton; grandparents; many aunts, uncles and cousins.
The Family will receive friends on Monday, May 15, 2023, from 5pm to 7pm at the West Center Chapel with a Prayer Service at 6:30pm.
MEMORIAL SERVICE: Tuesday, May 16, 2023, 11am at the West Center Chapel. Private inurnment.
Memorials are suggested to the Josie Harper Hospice House.
Michael David Stephens, the son of John and Gladys “Pete” Stephens, was born June 29, 1954, in Omaha, Nebraska. He died in Omaha on Wednesday, May 10, 2023, at the age of 68.
Mike was the middle of five children and enjoyed growing up in north Omaha. He attended Holy Angels Elementary School for eight years. He could be counted on to serve mass during school days and on weekends, as well as volunteer in the Church, with his dad and brothers, setting up and cleaning up for Bingo night and special events.
Upon graduating from North High School in 1972, he enlisted in the Air Force, working as an aircraft electrician at Offutt Air Force Base. He had a knack for electrical and mechanical work and moved on to work for Harris, repairing computers and printers. He then worked for American Bank Equipment, installing and maintaining safes and pneumatic tube systems in banks. In his last job, Mike returned to electronic maintenance, working at the main USPS plant in Omaha. He thoroughly enjoyed the challenges of keeping postal equipment operational and formed many close friendships. He retired in June 2021.
On March 31, 1984, Mike was united in marriage to Barb Dudding, of Omaha, NE and they settled in Fort Calhoun, NE. Two children were born to them, Brian, and Bridget. Together, Mike and Barb served as Cub Scout and Girl Scout leaders, and Mike continued as a Boy Scout leader. He thrived in the outdoors and immersed himself in the full experience, even attending Scout Leader training at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico and Boy Scout National Jamboree in Washington, D.C.
Besides being involved in Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, Mike had been an active member of the Fort Calhoun Fire and Rescue. He loved volunteering and providing skilled assistance on rescue calls as well as fire calls. He was also a 4th degree Knight of Columbus and served one year as the Grand Knight with the Fort Calhoun Council.
Whichever activity Mike pursued; he understood the core skills. Dancing initially drew Mike and Barb together and was a favorite activity during their early years together. He and Barb played in several softball leagues, and a bowling league. Of course, Mike insisted they have the appropriate equipment for every sport or organization. When they became active as scout leaders, he made sure the family had the appropriate uniforms, tents, and camping gear. When he retired, he filled out his golf club set, and initiated his sister, Jan, to the sport.
He was fervently proud of both kids, who achieved the highest award in their respective scouting troops. Brian pursued a career in sales and then mortgage banking. Mike welcomed Brian and his wife, Sara, to a weekly supper and to play with their three delightful children. And Mike was extremely proud of Bridget who graduated summa cum laude from Creighton University, and then from the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee. She enjoys working in the Omaha Public Libraries system.
Mike was a “people person.” To have known Mike is to have loved him and it comes as no surprise that he was valued, celebrated, and honored by so many. To Mike, no one was a stranger. He was an eager talker, who entertained many with his anecdotal stories, some often repeated, yet we listened because he absolutely loved the telling. Mike enjoyed weekly lunches with siblings, Jan and John. He loved people and was unwavering in joy and happiness towards others.
Mike appreciated daily communications with his former colleagues at the US Post Office. It was rare that Mike ever turned down a request to help anyone. He could be counted on to lend a hand to anyone who needed a ride, needed something transported, or wanted to bend his ear. Even after retirement, Mike joined his USPS friends for an occasional breakfast, another’s retirement celebration or to share a final goodbye to one of their ranks.
Mike enjoyed early morning rounds of golf and gained several friends who noted his daily trips to the local golf course and showed up asking to join him. He was glad to have the company and they appreciated his dogged determination to improve with each round.
Mike was an avid Creighton Bluejays basketball fan. Barb swore that almost half of his wardrobe was Bluejay shirts and hoodies. He was extremely proud that both Barb and Bridget are Creighton alums. He was an ardent fan and attending the annual “Pink Out” game in support of funding cancer research, was a priority.
Mike was admitted to Josie Harper Hospice House on April 11 and quickly made friends of many staff. He succumbed to cancer and died peacefully on May 10th.