Newberry, FL - Stephen Nelson Hulst, age 69 of Newberry, FL, formerly of Miami, FL, passed away Friday January 8th, 2021. Mr. Hulst joined the presence of the Lord peacefully and at home according to his wishes. He passed with his beloved wife and family by his side. Stephen was born on November 5th, 1951 in Miami, Florida to Judith Hulst, his beloved mother.
Stephen was a Reserve Sheriff's Deputy for the Alachua County Sheriff's Office where he put in 20+ years of service before retiring. During his career as a deputy, Mr. Hulst also worked for Gainesville Regional Utilities, also retiring after 20+ years of working in several departments, finishing as a gas technician specialist. Being the dedicated lifelong provider of his family that he was, and never one to be idle, after "retirement" Stephen went on to serve as a Police Officer with the Santa Fe College Police Dept until he was forced to retire for health reasons.
There was little to no other activity he loved more than to roam around the beautiful Florida Keys in one of the many small Boston Whaler boats he was so fond of. He loved the simplicity and proximity to the ocean that comes with a boat such as that. It was his passion to search the emerald waters for hidden lobster or to explore the countless islands in hopes of finding something that no one else had laid eyes on since the time it was lost, being a treasure hunter at heart. Often, he would salvage old buoys and ropes that were long ago discarded and, by way of tide, made their way to become entangled in the mangroves. No matter what simple treasures he claimed, it always made him happy to be in that spot at that moment with his family by his side.
Mr. Hulst was preceded in death by his younger brother David and his mother Judy. He is survived by his beloved family, wife Olivia, daughter Rachel Hulst, three sons, Jason, David and Brant Hulst, his granddaughters Maliyah and Cheyenne, grandson Dayton, and two grandchildren, not yet born, who he would have cherished. He is also survived by his brother Carl Hulst, sister Marie Hulst and nieces and nephews.
A Memorial Service will be held at 1:00 p.m. Sunday, January 17, 2021 at Countryside Baptist Church 10926 NW 39th Avenue Gainesville, FL. In lieu of flowers, should anyone wish to donate, his family would like to honor his memory by supporting the Rodeheaver Boys Ranch, a Christian ministry to boys that touched his heart. This can be done either by contacting Milam Funeral Home or the ranch directly at www.RBR.ORG
(RBR | It Is Better To Build Boys Than To Mend Men.) or (386)328-1281. Arrangements are in the care of MILAM FUNERAL AND CREMATION SERVICES 311 S. Main Street Gainesville, FL 32601 (352) 376-5361 www.milamfh.com