Friday, June 5, 2009

Steve Rider: March 6, 1974 - June 5, 2009

Dear friends and family,

This is Steve's sister. We're so sad to share with you all that Steve passed away early this morning at about 2:30 am. As you know, he developed a high fever yesterday afternoon and was admitted to the hospital at 7pm. His heart rate was very high and his oxygen levels were low. He was moved to the intensive care unit where he was sedated and intubated. His fever stayed high and they continued to monitor him. The doctors confirmed that he had pneumonia. Regardless of everything the doctors tried to do, he was unable to fight the infection and his body quickly began to fail. We believe he died painlessly. As you can imagine, we are completely devastated. We had no time to prepare or even to say goodbye. Steve was also not prepared. Although Steve had been battling leukemia for the past year, he seemed to be improving until about a week ago. This recent downturn in his health and the sudden onset of infection last night were such a shock. We miss him so much already. Johanna is surrounded today by lots of love from family and friends.

He was diagnosed one year ago today.

We are planning a Life Celebration ceremony and will share the details with everyone as soon as we know.

Thank you for all of your love and support.

30 comments:

Robin Troy said...

I am so sad for your loss. Steve was an impressive man who touched many people’s lives. He fought bravely with utmost optimism and grace and proved to be a brilliant example of how to choose one’s own attitudes regardless of exterior circumstances. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

Vanesa said...

I am so sorry for your loss. Steve was a great coworker and also just a fun guy to be around. Always smiling, always positive. My thoughts are with his family.

A fun memory of Steve: I remember the day we went skiing on a moral event. It was like my second time ever and he was just snowboarding loops around me and giving me tips.

erica said...

Cindy, Johanna, Reg, and Bev-
Steve was such a hero in how he fought this, with such determination - and seeing the grace with which your family has approached this and fought with him has been so moving. We are so very sorry for your loss and are sending many prayers and thoughts of love and comfort across the country to you during this difficult time.
With love, Erica & Brian in DC

Simon said...

Words can't express how sorry I am. Steve was our hero, our inspiration and now he's gone. I still can't believe it. Know that we will carry Steve around in our hearts, inspiring us to live with the passion, courage and sense of joy that he showed every day.

If there is anything at all I can do to help any of you, Johanna knows how to find me.

With love, Simon

MW said...

I am so sorry. I don't even know what to say that doesn't feel trite, except that this just SUCKS. Our thoughts are with you all. PLEASE PLEASE know if there is ANYTHING we can do just let us know.

Michael and Sarah

MIke Torres said...

I was so shocked and so sorry to hear this today. Steve was such a genuine, sweet person. This isn't right and it certainly isn't fair.

My thoughts will be on Steve for a long time. Lots of love and comfort to his family at this rough time.

Natala said...

I was really sad to hear about steve this morning. He was one of the most cheerful and innovative people i met at Microsoft - and he made my first few months there much better with his spirit and smile. My thoughts are with all of you.

Samantha said...

Johanna and family,

I am so deeply sorry for your loss. Please know that Steve touched so many of our lives. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

With love, Samantha.

Shawn said...

I am saddened, and sorry for your loss. Steve was friend to so many, and will truly be missed.

Stever - I’ll never forget you Broseph---Shawn

George said...

I will miss Stever so so much... I am so so sorry for everyone's loss.

I'll be there shortly... I'm making arrangements now.

--George R

Erin Heinemeyer said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. Steve was a wonderful person and my thoughts are with you all.

Love, Erin

sureshk said...

I know there are no words to ease your pain but please accept my sincere condolences on your loss.

-Suresh

Andreas said...

I don't even know what to say right now.

Mike said...

OMG! I am at a loss for words. I am so so so sorry for your loss. Steve showed the best in humanity and will be missed. Our prayers are with you and Steve.

Kathy and Bill Ellis said...

Johanna, Reg,Bev and Cindy,
We are at a loss for words having just read your news. What an inspiration Steve was to all who knew him! How vibrant, loving, funny & caring he grew to be -- an absolute shining example of grace and hope. How I wish we could have stopped up in Seattle and seen you all together -- met you, Johanna, and re-connected with Cindy, her new husband & especially Steve. What a wonderful family and life he had!!

My mind's eye will always remember that little boy on Guam who smiled and ran about, and even "flew" a big cardboard refrigerator box! with my own son, shared 1st birthdays and fun times. Different paths and times, but the Rider family was always sending us Christmas & birthday wishes as we shared news of our lives over the last 30+ years.

With a heavy heart, we send love and prayers and await the next time we can give hugs, wipe tears and smile again. Much love to you all.

Janet and Bill said...

Words cannot express our sadness upon hearing of Steve's death. To live such a short life is truly tragic. We were not fortunate enough to be around Steve very much, but we heard from others how wonderful he was. I remember when Brian first told me he had met Cindy, I asked if she had any brothers or sisters. Brian had a big smile on his face when he said she had a brother and "He's really a great guy!" Steve was loved by so many and will be sorely missed. Our hearts go out to Bev, Reg, Joanna, Cindy, and Brian. May your memories give you strength in the days ahead.
Sincerely, Janet and Bill

Christine said...

We're so, so sorry for your loss. Our hearts are with you guys right now, truly.

-Christine and Jonathan

Christine and Jonathan said...

We're so, so sorry for your loss. Our hearts are with you guys right now, truly.

-Christine and Jonathan

Negar and Hadi said...

May you rest in peace Stever. We will all miss you dearly but carry you inside our hearts. Our thoughts and prayers are with your family.

Joanne said...

I am so sorry to hear the news of Steve's passing. My thoughts and prayers go out to you.

J Gingold said...

Steve was someone I liked a lot as a friend and sometime collaborator. I lost touch with him for many years before discovering him again on Facebook a few months ago. Was looking forward to talking to him more.

Very sad to no longer be sharing a plane of existence with Stever. My thoughts go to his wife and family.

Trevor said...

I've read this blog just about every time I get online now. I only met Steve on a couple occasions, but it was just a joy to know him and to read his thoughts. I've known many people with cancer, but I can't recall any who exemplified courage and forbearance better than Steve.

Lalit said...

I feel so sad right now. He was such a good mentor.

Steve I'll always remember playing halo with you, and yes you were my first interviewer at Microsoft

Michael McDaniel said...

Every day at Microsoft was better with Steve in it. He put himself in everything he did, but what he did for a living didn't define him in any important way. I always admired him for his seeming certainty about what was important in life.

At one point, he hooked up a GPS with his smartphone and created what he called the "husband tracker." I remember the light in his eyes as he described all the hackery he had done to make it all work. It's one of my favorite memories of him.

Kelly and Joe said...

We're so sorry for your loss. The world will miss a great guy who always had a smile on his face.

Sue Bell said...

Reg, Bev, Cindy, and Johanna - Oscar and I are at a loss for words to express how we feel at the loss of your son, brother, husband. We know that you will hold him in your hearts forever and the years won't even begin to dim your memories and love for him. Ever since our early years together on Guam, and on through SAC HQ, KI Sawyer, and San Antonio, you all have been wonderful friends and neighbors. We will continue to lift you up in prayer. We send our deepest condolences.

Sue and Oscar Bell
Niceville, Florida

Michelle Kelly - Seattle said...

I met Steve through George, back in October, 2008. I went to high school with George....and had previously run 2 marathons for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society....but on the night I met Steve, I didn't have any plans to run another one. In February, I started training with L.L.S. for the Seattle Rock 'n Roll marathon, and asked Steve and Johanna for permission to run for Steve. I've kept up to date on his blog, and through training have kept in mind how very much they have faced day by day. When I received the news of his sudden decline in health, the entire reason I'm running and raising money for L.L.S. has shifted. It finally hits home that until there is a CURE, we cannot stop. Steve's life surely exemplified this philosophy. I am honored to have met Steve and Johanna, even if it was for one hour at a party - my life was forever changed - in a positive light. Love and Blessings to the entire family. Michelle Kelly

Anonymous said...

To everyone in Steve's family:
I am really shocked hearing this sad news. Like Steve I got detected with leukemia almost at the same time. Our mutual friend introduced me to Steve. Since then I corresponded with him on email and shared details about treatment. His indomitable spirit has been a constant source of inspiration for me. Steve's positive attitude has infused more optimism in me. It was at his insistence that I finally started blogging about my treatment. I would have loved to meet Steve in person. However, Almighty had some other plans for him. Please accept my heartfelt condolences.

Kartik

Cassie Wallender said...

There are no words for how terrible a loss this is, Steve will be deeply missed. I can't believe he is gone. He was a joy to work with and I was looking forward to having him return happy and healthy to the office. My thoughts go out to his family. Please know he inspired me to regularly donate blood and join the marrow registry, and encourage my friends to do so as well.

Anonymous said...

Johanna, I was so shocked by the news of your loss. Dad could not say enough wonderful things about Steve the last time he was here. I wish I would have had the opportunity to meet him. My thoughts have been of you constantly since hearing the news. The only words that keep coming to mind are...please know I love you. I'm always here if ever you need me. Barbara