iconSTEER, THOMAS JOHN CDR, USN Retired Thomas John "TJ" Steer, of San Diego, CA, died Wednesday, January 2, 2013, of brain cancer at the age of 50. He was born to Grace and Robert Steer on July 3, 1962, in Switzerland, and grew up in Larchmont, NY. TJ graduated from Mamaroneck High School in 1980 and received his BA from Colgate University in 1984. TJ became a Naval Officer in 1985 and went on to become a Naval Aviator in 1986. His first assignment was as an Instructor Pilot in Meridian MS, and he then went on to become an F-14 Pilot at NAS Miramar in San Diego. He served in VF-114 and VF-124 and then VF-101 until 1996, when he left active duty. He continued his service to his country in the U.S. Navy Reserves, at VR-S7, until he retired at the rank of Commander in 2007. After leaving active duty, TJ started his new career as a pilot for United Airlines in 1996. He flew the Airbus 320, Boeing 747 and 777. TJ was an exceptional man in so many ways. He was funny, generous, kind and loyal. His self-effacing sense of humor was unique and brought great joy to everyone he knew, even until the last days of his battle with cancer. His display of courage, faith, quiet determination and fighting spirit was inspirational for his family and friends, and will live on. TJ was blessed with many friends throughout his life, because he always was one. TJ met the love of his life, Barbara Pineda, in 1995. Barbara and TJ were blessed with a perfect marriage, and four wonderful children: ViviAnne (12), Thomas (10), Clara (8) and Elsa (8). Also surviving are his parents Grace and Robert, the families of brothers Pete and Bob, Barbara's mother Anne, and her brothers Bill, Federico, Tomas, Daniel, and Andres. The wake and visitation will be held at the EI Camino Memorial Encinitas Chapel on January 8 from 5-9 p.m. A mass will be held at St. John's Catholic Church in Encinitas, CA, on January 9 at 11 a.m. with military honors and cemetery services following at EI Camino Memorial in San Diego at 1:30 p.m. A reception will follow at the Officer's Club at the Miramar Air Station. God bless you TJ.

Funeral Home

El Camino Memorial - Encinitas
340 Melrose Ave Encinitas, CA 92024
(760) 753-1143

Published in The San Diego Union Tribune on Jan. 9, 2013