In Memory

Stephen Ochiltree

Stephen Ochiltree

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10/23/13 11:01 AM #1    

Barbara DuFrane (Daly)

So sorry to hear about Stephen's passing.

Rest in Peace.


Barbara DuFrane Daly

12/14/13 03:07 AM #2    

Richard Epting

Steve Ochiltree died on April 28, 2012.  I learned this during a chance meeting with George Wilber at a local Indian casino.  At the time of his death, Steve was living in Marion Iowa, a small city surrounded by rolling hills and tree lined pastures This I learned  from "People Search" and the fact that my son, Tyler, was married in a small country church 3 miles south of Marion. Basically, this was all I, or anybody else knew about Steve.  He was a close friend in middle school and high school and yet we had no idea what Steve had been doing for the past 50 years.  Life is kind of funny that way; people come in and out of our lives like commutors at Grand Central Station, now we see them, now we don't.  In fact, none of us (Wilber, Phillips, Mannix or I) were aware of Steve's whereabouts.  Actually, Wilber had had some contact with Steve, but George is somewhat ellusive, unless, of course, you frequent L.A. cardrooms. 

Back in the seventh grade, the five of us had been inseparable.  Everyday after school we would meet up at Steve's house, which was the perfect hang out.  Steve had a spacious bedroom, (unlike Phillips and myself) ,but more importantly, his room was separated from the rest of the house giving us almost total privacy.  It was in that room where the 5  of us began to lose our childhood innocence.  Occasionally, Steve would "borrow" a few cigarettes from his Dad,  and the five of us would lay around puffing on Lucky Strikes while discussing the important issues of the day: sports, girls, our future cars, and who was the toughest 8th grader at Tierra Linda. It was in Steve's bedroom we first discussed the idea of forming the Action Masters Car Club, a club which eventually had only one car, Phillips' ,but which generated a lot of good times, and some great memories.  It was in that room that we started to come of age as we left childhood and began to travel the  bumpy road  through adolescence. Sure, we'd give each other a hard time, but when someone had a problem, we always stepped up for each other.  And it was  Steve, with his sly wit, who had an uncomplicated way of getting to the heart of the problem and finding a workable solution.  Also, we always had our music; that great music that was  the soundtrack of our adolescence.  When we got tired of Steve's seemingly endless record supply, Phillips would turn on KDIA out of Oakland and we'd listen to some of the best rock and roll of any era. That music set the tone for our bull sessions and certainly our youth;  and it was so damn fun to listen to. 

Fortunately, finding more about Steve's life was not that difficult.  Modern technology has provided us with Google, and with Google, one can find anything.  After a quick hour of searching, I had discovered a great deal about Steve: he was survived by his wife Nancy, son Nicholas and daughter Mary.  Steve had earned a B.A. in history, an M.A. in social work, and was employed by the Dept. of Human Services in Marion where he mainly delt with troubled teens. I found a reference to a guest book signed by those who attended his burial service.  Those in attendance were his friends and co-workers and , as I read their comments I became captivated by their obvious respect and love for Steve.  They had great admiration for him as a person and as a social worker.  They wrote of his professionalism, his compassion, his eternal optimism, and of course, his great sense of humor.  One co-worker said Steve "provided humor and calmness in an often stressful environment".  Another mentioned his clever one-liners that "would lighten any mood".  One comment really impressed me for his co-worker stated, "Steve really cared for people in trouble."  The more I read, the more I realized that their Steve was just like our Steve - just a little older.  Steve apparently  hadn't changed much.  The things we loved about him: his sense of humor, his being there for you, and the way he always made a bad situation better, were still an integral part of his persona.  After reading their comments I was proud to say, this man, Steve Ochiltree, had once been my friend.  I think I can speak for those who knew him and certainly for the Action Masters when I say: "Steve, it was a great ride and your friendship made all of us a little better".

12/14/13 04:35 PM #3    

Barbara DuFrane (Daly)


I thought what you wrote was marvelous.  A very entertaining and wonderdul remembrance of your old friend.

Barbara DuFrane Daly


12/14/13 04:56 PM #4    

Sandra Seely (LWeissel)

to Rick Epting..a heartfelt memory of your dear guys were all very fortunate to have experienced "life in the teens" together in San Carlos.  Steve was a good guy and I definitely remember that keen sense of humor.  So sorry to hear of his passing...he made an impression on many throughout his life.   RIP old friend.  My warmest thoughts to his family and friends.

12/16/13 01:18 PM #5    

Jim Phillips

Good ole Steve - he was a great guy and a good friend. Richard (we called him Rick back in those days) Epting really captured the essence of Steve in the comments he posted - Thanks Richard. Wilber, Ochiltree, Epting and myself all lived within a few blocks of each other so were constantly hanging out together. Ken Mannix, our other companion lived on the Cedar street hill north of San Carlos Avenue. Steve, Rick, Ken and myself all played football for the Scots and spent a lot of time together there also. I am sorry Steve didn't stay a bit more connected but sometimes that's the way of life. I'll miss Steve, but think of him often - a lot of great memories. So long old friend - glad to have made your acquaintance.

12/26/13 01:46 PM #6    

Gerrine Cowgill (Peckenpaugh)

Excellent summary Richard (aka Rick). Thanks for  taking the time to work Google for his bio and jogging my memory. What a fun, nice group of guys!

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