Deirdre (Dede) Stephens
On May 15, 2021, Deirdre (Dede) Stephens, 70, peacefully passed away in Palm Springs, California after a brief battle with cancer. Dede was born May 6, 1951 in Salt Lake City, Utah to James and Kathryn Jane (Kearns) Stephens. A prankster and a joke-teller from an early age, she appreciated the lighter side of life and never took herself too seriously. Armed with an infectious and raucous laugh, she made the world a better and brighter place. She cherished a celebration, particularly when costumes were involved; but remained sensitive to the individual needs of others and was keen to providing personalized attention as reflected in her prolific letter writing, post cards, and greeting cards…where you could almost hear her chuckling on the other end. It was no laughing matter however, when it came to competition where she flourished in swimming, softball, and golf; and twice met the cancer-challenge with courage and composure.
Dede attended St. Mary's of the Wasatch High School where she was student body president and a member of the marching squad, and subsequently attended Marquette University. She worked as Circulation Supervisor for the Salt Lake Tribune newspaper and later served on their Board of Directors. She was married to her partner of 42 years Cindy Stewart, and together they owned Merrill's Beauty Salon.
She is survived by her wife Cindy, brothers Jamie (wife Lauren), Roger (wife Eileen), and Terry, several nieces and nephews, and preceded in death by her sister Kathryn (Wooz) and brother Tom Durkin. With a bit of wanderlust, Dede's easy-going spirit and super-sized mobile home took her places where she could connect with the thing she loved most - people. We wish her well on her new adventure.
Special thanks to Sonya Bowman for the care and comfort she provided during Dede's final days.
Memorial services to be announced and celebrated at a later date. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to Well in the Desert, Huntsman Cancer Institute or L-Fund.
Published by The Desert Sun from May 20 to May 21, 2021.