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E. Paul Stecklein, 77, passed away suddenly on April 4, 2023, at his home in Divide. Paul was born in Lamar, Co on April 1, 1946 to parents, Alvin and Perces (Scott) Stecklein. His father passed away when he was 9 years old. He spent his childhood in Lamar until his Senior year when he moved to live with his mother and then graduated from Plainview High School in 1964.
He and his brother were best friends and probably did things they shouldn’t have done. He was always connected to the schools in Lamar including Lamar High School. He attended class reunions which he enjoyed and was looking forward to his 60th reunion next year.
After high school, Paul attended Adams State College 1964/65 on a baseball scholarship. Unfortunately, he was injured which squelched his participation in baseball. He was then called by the Army to serve in the Vietnam Conflict but instead Paul enlisted in the Air Force. His basic and advanced veterinarian training led him to be assigned as a Medic. He was sent to Guam and spent 18 months in Guam flying into Vietnam to triage and transfer our wounded heroes to bases in Japan and the Philippines. These flights were not easy, but his fellow Medics were an important support system. He earned numerous medals. He was discharged from the Air Force in January 1969. He was very proud of his military service.
After his discharged in returned to college at Colorado State University. After college he worked in construction and as a rodeo cowboy and working cowboy in Montana and Wyoming. In 1986 he met his soulmate, Suzan Miller, and they were married in 1986 (three months after meeting). In 1987, he became an attorney-in-fact for the highly respected Disabled American Veterans organization. In 1992, he was transferred to Baltimore, MD to become the supervisor of that office. He represented veterans and their families in getting all the benefits entitled to them. He was well respected and most proud of getting former POW’s on the Eastern Shore of MD their benefits and of getting widows their benefits.
He retired from the DAV in 2006 and returned to the mountains of Colorado. He joined a group of guys in Highland Lakes. They were known as the ROMEOs (Retired Old Men Eating Out). He so enjoyed participating with this group of guys.
Paul is predeceased by his parents, and his brother, Alvin Jr. He is survived by his wife, Suzan, his sons, Cody (Nat) Stecklein, Andrew (Melissa) Stecklein and his daughter, Wendy (Dan) Mork, his brother Allen (Julia) Stecklein, and his sister-in-law Connie (Ken) Stark. He is also survived by grandchildren: Wyatt, Garret, Dylan, Preston, Ethan Stecklein, and Madeline, Emily and Hannah Mork. And numerous cousins, nieces and nephews and the ROMEO’s. He loved his family. He will be missed by his dogs, Jackson and Rockie. He is also survived by his former wife, Charlene Weed.
He was a Life Member of the DAV, American Legion, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He was a life-long member of the Catholic Church in Woodland Park and was a Third and Fourth Honorary member of the Knights of Columbus in Lamar, Co. He loved his faith.
He is known for his love of books. He only read hard covered and had a collection of a thousand books. He was a lifelong fan the Denver Broncos and the Colorado Rockies both of which have disappointed him. He will continue cheering for them from Heaven
His services will be on Friday, April 14 at the Our Lady of the Woods Catholic Church in Woodland Park, Co. Burial will follow at the Divide Cemetery. Pallbearers are sons Cody, Andy and grandsons Garret, Dylan Preston and Ethan. An honorary pallbearer representing the ROMEO’s, was Roger King.
Sympathy acknowledges may be sent to his wife, Suzan at 958 Cottonwood Lake Dr, Divide, CO 80814.