Thomas Gene Steele, 71, of Salisbury passed away on Friday, January 1, 2021 at the NC State Veteran’s Home in Salisbury.
Born in Gaston County on February 20, 1949, he was the son of the late Laura Jane Kiser and Joseph Johnson Steele.
Chuck graduated from Bessemer City High School in 1967, where he excelled in baseball and football. He was one of three outstanding local players winning the national championship for VFW Teener ball in 1963. In football he played fullback and linebacker for BCHS and was one of the top ten scorers in the county and area. Also, he was the first documented 1,000 yard rusher in the school’s history. He loved his years at BCHS.
After serving in the Air Force, deployed to Vietnam, Chuck pursued his career in California, working as an engineer in manufacturing and for many years he loved coaching young boys in baseball.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Left to cherish his memory are his daughter, Laura Steele; brothers, Russell Steele (Kim) and Jeff Steele; sisters, Cindy Hill (Jack), Jackie Samek (George), Susan Fowler (Brad) and Robin Tate (Greg); cousin and caregiver, Gail Davis Crowell and Charlie Crowell.
A graveside service will be held at 2:00 PM Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at Salisbury National Cemetery, 501 Statesville Blvd., Salisbury, NC 28144 with military honors conducted by the Lyerly Volunteer Joint Services Honor Guard. Masks must be worn at the service.
The family wishes to thank the doctors, nurses and staff for taking such good care of him for the past several years. Many of his nurses have expressed their condolences and have remarked “He was so sweet, he was the best patient they had, he never complained, always pleasant and caring. If we asked him how he was, he would always answer ‘I’m good darling.’”
Memorials may be made to the Bessemer City High School Athletics Department, 119 Yellow Jacket Ln., Bessemer City, NC 28016.
Lyerly Funeral Home is serving the Steele family. Online condolences may be made at www.lyerlyfuneralhome.com.
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