Dr. William “Bill” Carl Steckelberg was born Jan. 13, 1941 in Henryetta. His parents were Carl Steckelberg, who ran the Atlas Coal Mine and later the Steckelberg Insurance Agency in Henryetta. His mother, Juanita Guthrie Steckelberg was a local artisan and employee of the Steckelberg Insurance agency as a Realtor.
His elementary and secondary education was completed in the Henryetta School System. As a “Hen” he graduated from Henryetta High School in 1959. He attended Westminster College in Fulton, MO from 1959-60, and ultimately graduated with a B.S. in Physics from the Carnegie Institute of Technology (Carnegie-Mellon University) in Pittsburgh, PA.
During summers in Pittsburgh he worked in a Crystallography Laboratory at the University. He lived only a few blocks from Forbes Field, so in his spare time he watched some professional baseball and football.
He then went to graduate school at OSU from 1965-71. It was in 1971 that he was awarded a PhD in Physics. He worked as a research assistant with the Atomic Energy Commissions research laboratory in Ames, Iowa from 1971-74. The untimely passing of his father Carl Steckelberg necessitated Bill's return to Henryetta to assist in running the family real estate and insurance business with mother, Juanita Steckelberg from 1974-89. During that time he had several positions with the Professional Insurance Agents of Oklahoma, including President from 1985-86.
He also was a member of the Lions Club International of Henryetta where he held offices of President from 1985-86 and Treasurer from 1985-91.
After getting his teaching certification from NSU, he taught Physics, Mathematics and Chemistry at Dewar Public Schools from 1989-98. He then taught Physics at TCC from 1998 to his passing.
Survivors include daughter Holly Steckelberg and son-in-law Morgan Belcher of Tulsa, his cousin De Anna Lawson and Tom Lawson of Parker, CO, DAnna’s daughter Kristen Ferguson of Denver CO, former wife, Marjorie Steckelberg, and his beloved dogs Stewart and Durango.
Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. Friday, April 20 at Integrity Funeral Service in Henryetta. Interment will follow in Westlawn Cemetery under direction of Integrity Funeral Service.
In lieu of flowers, please direct donations to some of William’s favorite following charities:
St. Joseph’s Indian School, PO Box 326, Chamberlain, SD 57326, www.stjo.org/apr
SPCA, PO Box 2007, Milford, NH 03055, www.spcai.org , donor services @spcai.org
St. Judes Childrens Research Hospital, stjude.org
St. Labre Indian School, Ashland, Montana 59004, www.stlabre.org
Disabled Veterans National Foundation, dvnf.org