October 13, 1946 – May 2, 2019
Stephen “Steve” R. Westphal, 72 years, of Fremont, Nebraska passed away at his home on Thursday, May 2, 2019. Stephen was born October 13, 1946 in Fremont to James and Pearl (Bang) Westphal. He grew up in Fremont and graduated from Fremont High School in 1964, after a successful theatrical career with the Drama Department. He continued to perform in theater until he graduated with his Bachelor of Arts degree from Midland Lutheran College, majoring in theater with a minor in psychology. Steve married June Chase on August 21, 1975 in Sheboygan, Wisconsin and together they raised two beautiful daughters.
Steve led a most interesting life, and most anyone who really knew him will attest to that! As a boy, he had dreams of being a cowboy (similar to many other children of his era) and travelled by himself at the age of fifteen to work on a dude ranch in Wyoming. Later in life he fulfilled his “cowboy dreams” and enjoyed raising champion Quarter Horses with his girls for many years. Steve's first love however, was music!! He enjoyed a musical career that spanned over 50 years, playing in several notable bands and earning his way into the NE Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame in both 1995 and 2001. Through music, he forged MANY friendships that would last a lifetime. After working at ENCOR and several successful sales jobs, he became the morning “Voice of Fremont” for 7 years at KHUB Radio until he retired.
In his spare time he enjoyed fly fishing, and was a feature-guest in an article in NEBRASKAland Magazine several years ago. He was a past-president of Trout Unlimited in Nebraska, and was a devoted advocate to saving Nebraska's small streams and the fish inhabiting them. He was not afraid to speak in front of Senators and politicians to voice his opinion on plans to desecrate the waters he loved so much. He was very respected for his passion and efforts in that area.
Steve was a happy, joyful soul from birth! He beat paralysis from Polio in the first few years of his life proving then that he would never let any arising health issue “hold him down” in his life. He had a gift for storytelling and for the art of humor; he truly enjoyed making people laugh and was still doing so right down to his final moments. He was a caring, loving husband and a devoted father to his girls and he truly loved spending time with his family especially if it involved outdoor activities. Steve was an outdoorsmen at heart, he loved the country and everything “nature”, and even animals were drawn to his kind and caring spirit. He loved all creatures great and small, with a passion for raising beautiful fish, dogs and horses. He touched many lives in his 72 years with us, and will be remembered by those he knew as being smart, funny and just genuinely lovable. He lived an amazing and fulfilling life that is almost legendary to those he inspired.
Steve is survived by his wife, June of Fremont; daughters, Stefanie (Jeff) Callahan, Samantha Schram and partner,TJ all of Fremont; brother Mike Westphal of Fremont; grandchildren, Logan, Hunter, Nathan and Pearl; and loyal dog, Stewie Lewis.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Neal and Robert; sister-in-law, Jan Chase-Nelson and brother-in-law, Richard “Dick” Chase.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held at 2:00 P.M. on Tuesday, May 7, 2019 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Fremont. The Rev. Dan Heuer will officiate. Visitation with family receiving friends will be Monday from 5 PM to 8 PM at Moser Memorial Chapel in Fremont.
Memorials may be directed to the family for a designation yet to be determined.
Online condolences may be left at www.mosermemorialchapels.com