Steven Walter Pryseski|
Steven Walter Pryseski, a life-long Akron resident, husband, father, educator, and one serious Ohio State fan, departed from this world as the sun was rising on Thursday, December 19, 2013.
The youngest child of four, Steve's parents were Walter "Pete" Pryseski and Helen (Brown) Pryseski.
Steve attended John C. Ritzman Elementary, Robert G. Hyre Junior High, and graduated from Ellet High School in 1977. Pryseski was known for his perfect attendance records and prolific cross country and track activity. As a long-distance runner, he could out sprint anyone to the finish line in a tight race. In his early years, he organized neighborhood track meets on the old cinder track at Ellet which included hand-made ribbons for the winners of each event.
Following high school, Steve went on to study Communications at Akron University where he received his Bachelor's degree in 1983. Following graduation, Pryseski started substitute teaching for various schools, including a brief stint for the Tempe, Arizona school district. Continuing in education, Steve shared his love of track with the students of Roswell Kent and also had enlightening experiences with the children of Margaret Park Elementary school while being their in-school suspension teacher.
In Akron, he also served as an assistant coach for the Ellet cross country and track teams. His dedication and determination as a substitute teacher and coach eventually lead to an education certificate and a full-time English position at Ellet in 1993. During his tenure at Ellet, he served several years as a head coach for both cross country, and track and field teams. His cross country teams brought home the city title for five different years. Following his coaching years, Pryseski worked as a track official up to last season.
Steve also served as Ellet High School's yearbook advisor. He was the voice of Ellet High's football stadium along with Ellet's basketball season announcer. "Mr. Pry" was voted Teacher of the Year by his colleagues and students and received many other honorable awards as an educator at Ellet. In August of 2013, Steve started a new journey at the Akron Early College on the University of Akron campus. He was excited to start this new teaching endeavor.
Along with being a teacher, Steve was a loving husband and father. On December 31, 1989, Steve married his best friend, Julie Schumacher Pryseski, also an Ellet graduate (1981). They enjoyed almost twenty-four years of marriage while raising their daughters, Rachel and Hannah.
Steve was passionate about his Ohio State Buckeyes, yet his interests were broad in literature, film, theatre, music, travel, summer softball leagues, golf and of course, helping the Firestone High School band during their summer at band camp. He will be sorely missed by all of his friends and family who shared these passions with him.
Steve was preceded in death by his oldest brother, Michael; and his parents, Walter and Helen Pryseski. He is survived by his wife, Julie; daughter, Hannah; step-daughter, Rachel (Dan), of Knoxville, Tennessee; older brother, Dave of Denton, Texas; older sister, Joyce of Akron; and many nieces and nephews. Steve had many lifelong friends that he cherished as much as his family.
A private service has already occurred, and there will be a Public Memorial: a celebration of Steve's life on Sunday, January 19 in the Ellet High School Auditorium.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Pryseski Family Benevolent Fund via First Merit Bank.
Published in Akron Beacon Journal on Dec. 22, 2013