My beloved husband of 34 years, and greatest friend, Steve Goldman, 56, died suddenly on June 30, 2008 of an aortic aneurism, while aboard an Alaskan cruise ship. Fortunately, his entire Florida family was present to share what were to be his last days, and to join together in grief and shock at his passing.
Steve was an incredibly intelligent, knowledgeable, softhearted, fascinating, and multi-faceted man. An engineer with a EE degree from Carnegie Mellon University, and a Master of Computer Science degree from UNC, he could do almost anything. He was a Senior Software Engineer for Sun Microsystems, and a wiz at fixing bugs - or so I was told, as his work was always way above my head. He could build everything from circuit boards and reef aquarium systems, telescopes and a telescope mirror-grinding machine, to a hangar, with attached observatory, and decks (no matter how intricate my design), and played a major role, along with his brother, Dave, in the building of our home.
He was half way through the construction of a five-seat, fiberglass Velocity aircraft, which he'd hoped to complete in a couple more years. He was an IFR-rated pilot, who also flew hang gliders, and used to scuba dive, as well. Steve could fix cars, computers, lawnmowers... you name it. As he learned at an early age from his father, Frank, he never let "...a dumb thing get the better of (him)."
Steve had an interest in all animals, and even became a beekeeper in recent years, but he especially loved our cats, and I know they'll be continuing to wait at the door every night for him to come home and feed them. They'll miss his lap on the couch in the evenings while he sat at his laptop.
Though not a biological father, Steve became a loving one to my two nieces, Katie and Gretchen Niver, who came to live with us in their teen years. They'll be a comfort to me with him gone.
Besides myself, and a multitude of loving friends, Steve leaves behind his mother, Alice, and husband, Leo Accardi; sister, Sandy; brother, Chris, wife, Julie and sons, Ryan and Justin; brother, Dave, wife, Sue, and daughter, Amy; sisters, Linda, and husband, Steve Camp, and Laurie.
A gathering of friends and family will be held at Fat Cat Air on July 26 to celebrate his life.
Donations can be made in his name to the Carnivore Preservation Trust in Pittsboro, NC, or the Conservators' Center, Inc. in Mebane, NC.
Steve will be missed every minute of every day for the rest of my life. Gretchen Niver
Published in The News & Observer on Jul. 8, 2008.