George W Steckler
I was born July 18th 1942 in New Rochelle NY. A woman, Doctor Daly, facilitated delivery while most male doctors were serving this great country during WWII – frightening times.
I came out feet first, which begs the question have my feet remained on the ground?
In 1954 my family moved from Germantown NY to Jackson Corners NY. I later graduated from Pine Plains Central School kind of by the skin of my teeth.
Ike left JFK 3,205 troops in Vietnam. In the following years, mostly under Johnson, that number rose to over half a million. That is more than a 15,500% increase. This is when I served in the United States Marine Corps Reserve. Often referred to as “weekend warriors” the chance of being called was always there. I was never called while over 58,000 of our best young were killed. The justice was never met. My life felt a sense of guilt.
Following the USMC, I worked on a swell dairy farm 70 hours a week for $77.
Then one year at the Ancram paper mill. Boring work with a great group of guys.
My family built three successful food businesses. Although family comes first, it was not my preferred career. The building trades intrigued me. In time, I was pretty much all over it. What I was most known for – laugh – was Drywall finishing. It was a passion for over 50 years and kept me physically and mentally fit. Non-career passions include alternative energy.
Wives – 2 up, 2 down. It’s not who I am to dwell on negativity. Every 41 years, God sent me the near perfect little daughter Veronica Marie Steckler. I have been blessed.
I also leave behind a younger sister Jill Roman and her 2 special boys Mike and Scott. It was a great joy being their uncle.
Way later, I spent 4.5 years as a Cancer Research Lab Rat. They said they spent over $1 million on me. It all went pretty well. All good things come to an end. My second fight led me to the #2 cancer hospital in the country, Memorial Sloan Kettering. It turns out I had something curable and something incurable. The window of light started closing fast.
A very good thing is that Sloan will utilize my body for their ongoing cancer research. I will then return to my beloved Jackson Corners, one of the prettiest places on Earth. I will ultimately end up on the hill in the Gallatin Reformed Church Cemetery near family and other good folk.
At 77 years of age, in the big picture I was never to be an old sod suffering and staying way over my time. You know the type that see gloom everywhere. I have had a good life pretty much long lived. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Milan Fire Department or Marine Toys for Tots. That’s all folks. Spread love, not hate. – George W. Steckler
George passed away on October 24th, 2019, and wrote this, his own obituary. There will be no calling hours. The life of the eternal optimist will be celebrated.
TO: FRIENDS OF GEORGE & VERONICA STECKER.
There will be a celebration of George's life on Sunday, November 24th, 2019 for 12 noon to 5 pm at the Pine Plains Lion's Club.
Bring a dish if you wish, but definitely bring a story!!
Please spread the work to other frineds touched by George's larger than life presence
Arrangements are under the direction of Burnett & White Funeral Homes 7461 S. Broadway, Red Hook, NY.