“Sailing was a family affair when I was growing up,” explains Steve (87) when asked about where his passion for sailing derived from. Steve used to go sailing with his five uncles as a young boy—spending their days sailing, digging up mussels and canoeing. Steve stated that he cannot remember the last time he had the opportunity to go sailing, but it was sometime when he was a young adult. Steve was telling his friends at the community how much he missed being out on the water, for it would be a dream come true to have the opportunity to get back on a sail boat.
Steve has lived a very incredible life full of helping others. He served in the Air Force for six years stationed in various locations in the US and Europe during his tenure in the armed services—Steve was discharged at the rank of a Staff Sergeant. Thereafter, Steve became very involved in the Civil Rights Movement. He was one of the 300 people that marched in Selma as a civil rights activist, and he had the incredible experience of meeting Dr. Martin Luther King in person. Steve said, “I remember Martin Luther King saying to us all, ‘We’re going to march,’ and a chill ran down my spine. We all linked arms and started singing. I’ve been an activist for most of my life, but I will never forget that one single moment.”
Afterwards, Steve got married and had four children, two biological and two adopted. While giving seminary a try more than once, he decided it was not for him. He moved his family to Evanston, Illinois where he worked on behalf of citizens seeking affordable housing. When his wife’s father developed a sickness in 1970, Steve moved to Seattle where his father-in-law resided. Steve picked up a job as a security guard on top of the Space Needle before landing a job at the Washington State Human Relations commission. Currently residing at Brookdale West Seattle in Washington State, Steve is a Resident Ambassador and strives to continue to help everyone he can.
Though Steve’s life has been full of memorable moments, he feels the most wistful about those peaceful summer days on the water, where he first contemplated the power of peace. Wish of a Lifetime and Brookdale were excited to reunite Steve with the water by sending him and his grandson, Jonathan, on a sunset sail in Seattle. Steve mentioned that the boat was tilted at a perfect 45 degree angle and was one of the most beautiful vessels he had ever seen. The wind was strong and steady, which Steve mentioned makes all the difference when you’re on the ocean. He stated “I feel very lucky that I was able to experience sailing again. It was absolutely beautiful.”
Photography Credits: Christopher Bachmann Photography