TBDBITL Alumni Club

The Best Damn Band In The Land - The Ohio State University Marching Band Alumni

Stephen Kenyon Stafford

April 24, 1938 - June 20, 2019

Steve Stafford, 81, passed away on June 20, 2019, after a long illness.

He was predeceased by his father Willis Lincoln Stafford, mother Virginia Hockett, sister Gwen Fick (Ken) of Castalia, Ohio, and brother Joseph Stafford (Sue) of Delaware, Ohio.

He is survived by his wife Joyce, son Stephen (Sandra Rifkin) of Irvine, California, son Seth (Heather MacDonald) of San Carlos, California, daughter Susanna of Baltimore, Maryland, son Will (Wendy Clark) of Vestal, New York, grandsons Jake, Adam, Collin, Aiden, Billy, Benny, granddaughters Kiara, Ayla, Emma, Kallee, Alia, and nephews Sam and Dean.

Steve was born in Worthington, Ohio on April 24, 1938. His father was a Methodist minister who had churches in a number of different towns and cities in Ohio, and Steve grew up and attended school primarily in Oak Harbor, Maumee, and Marion. He joined the Army Reserves after high school, and attended Ohio Wesleyan University and Ohio State, where he was a member of the celebrated Ohio State University Marching Band ('58, '59, '60), which at that time marched 100 men. He graduated from OSU in 1962 with a Bachelor's degree in music theory and composition. He married Joyce Tucker of Lakeside, Ohio in July, 1961. With his music degree, the logical next step was to become a computer programmer, a new field which fascinated Steve. He worked at Nationwide Insurance in Columbus, where his four children were born, and then moved to the Triple Cities in 1969 to work at IBM, where he was a programmer and educator until his retirement in 1993. For many years, both while employed and after retirement, he was the Director of the IBM Band, which played weekly outdoor concerts in Endicott. As a trumpet player, he performed in numerous local bands and orchestras, including the BC POPS, for which he composed two pieces, New Orleans and The Juggler. He was also a long-time member and officer of Local 380, the American Federation of Musicians. As a speleology enthusiast Steve travelled extensively in the United States to visit many and varied caves. He also enjoyed juggling, and especially liked teaching other people to juggle. He was a witty and humorous man who made us laugh even during the years of his illness.

The family wishes to thank the personnel of Lourdes at Home and Lourdes Home Hospice for their wonderful support and affection for Steve. It has meant more than we can express. Donations to those programs in Steve's memory would be very welcome.

According to Steve's wishes, no public funeral or memorial service will be held.

Steve was a member of the marching band starting in 1958 when he played efer in X-Row. In 1959 and 1960, he played trumpet in A-Row.