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Carolyn Kay Steves
September 22, 1941-January 20, 2022
Carolyn Steves obit pic
Carolyn Kay Steves née Smith, 80, of Ripon, California passed away quietly in her home on January 20, 2022.
   Carolyn, also known as Connie by her friends and family, was a lifelong resident of the central valley.  She was born, the youngest of eight children, on September 22, 1941 at home in Vera, Oklahoma to Bonnie (Thomas) and John D. Smith. The family moved from Oklahoma to California when Connie was nine months old. After graduating from high school she moved to Manteca, there she began working for Continental Telephone, it was then she met her future husband, Robert D. Steves (Bob).  Connie attended San Joaquin Delta College and received her Bachelor’s degree from National University.
  Bob and Connie married in May of 1961 and made their home on Alameda St. in Manteca.  In February of 1962, they welcomed their first son, Robert, Jr.  Two more children would follow, Bronwyn (Broni), and Neill Christopher (Chris). In 1972, the family moved to the ranch home on Union road.  Connie was so happy at her home, gardening, canning, raising animals, and nurturing the land.  
   Connie spent her most of her adult life in service.  When her children were at St. Anthony’s school, Connie was a leader of many programs.  She was an active member of the P.T.A, the Y.L.I. and she ran the gold fish booth for over 10 years at the St. Anthony’s Harvest Festival.  She was Brownie, Girl Scout, Cub Scout, and Boy Scout leader.  When the family moved to the country, Connie then became an active member of Nile Garden 4-H.  She taught sewing, food preservation, and arts and crafts.  
Connie was so very proud of the work she did for children who were less fortunate. Prior to working outside the home, Connie babysat for children.  Many of those children stayed in contact into adulthood.  Connie worked for Toy Box Day Care Center in the mid 1970’s and then worked in the English as a Second Language lab at San Joaquin Delta College from 1979-1986.  In 1986, Connie worked for E. Ross Clark.  In 1989, she started working in the field where her passion for children was able to be cultivated  She helped lay the foundation for a nonprofit organization to provide homes for foster youth.  Connie worked for Valley Oak Residential Treatment from 1989 to 1999.  In 1999, she was designated with the role of starting nonpublic school for students with special needs.  From 1999 to 2007, she served as the administrator of South San Joaquin Education Center.  
 Her children were her pride and joy.  She was always present at her children’s many sports and extracurricular activities.  She was not only there to support her own children but to support and cheer on the entire team. One of Connie’s legacies will be her unconditional love for so many children.  So many were blessed by her kindness, generosity, compassion, and constancy.  She gave her love to so many.
Connie loved gardening, music, camping, basking in the sun, hugs, kisses, family gatherings, singing, dancing, Andrea Bocelli, Norah Jones, her grandchildren, her great- grandchildren, and animals.  Her favorite activities were attending Strawberry Music Festivals and family reunions. Her hands were a gift to all who came within proximity of them.  She would give a warm touch, a loving embrace, or a gentle rub on your face.  
   Connie is preceded in death by her siblings, William, Peggy, George, John, Ara Joann,  Charles, and Sandra and her youngest child, Neill Christopher (2017).  Connie is survived by her elder sister Norma Bell and younger brother, Frank Solivan, eldest son and his wife, Robert Steves, Jr. and Lisa Steves,  her daughter, Bronwyn Steves, her grandchildren, Christopher and Amber Howze, Kristen and Mike Alexander, Katherine Steves, Mary Elizabeth Steves, Nicholas Steves Howze, Robert John Steves, and two great-grandchildren, Charlotte Howze and Wyatt Steves Machado.
   A visitation is scheduled on Friday, February 11, from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Deegan Funeral Chapel in Escalon.  A celebration of her life will be held in May.


Manteca (Calif.) Bulletin

Thursday, February 10, 2022