Stephen Ruef

December 2, 1952September 9, 2021

Ruef, Stephen, age 68 of Dayton, unexpectedly passed away on September 9, 2021 after enjoying his last game of golf. He was born on December 2, 1952, in Dayton, the son of Ruth and John Ruef.

Stephen is preceded in death by his parents, and survived by his wife of 47 years, Ann, son Zachary (Erin) Ruef, daughter Olivia (Adam) Mash, grandchildren: Jack, Kate, Connor, Laney, Max, and Wyatt, siblings: CarolAnn Stackler, Joe (Mary Lou) Ruef, Phyllis Winfield, Tom (Monica) Ruef, and Peggy Whisman, and a host of nieces, nephews, and other relatives and friends, including his faithful furry companion, Rudy.

Steve proudly served for the City of Dayton Fire Department for 31 years, retiring as a Captain. Most recently he worked for Miami Valley Hospital as a part-time concierge.

Steve was a legend, always the life of a party, first to crack a joke or the first to raise a beer with a toast. He loved his favorite pastime golf, especially with his closest family and friends. He enjoyed festivals, traveling, a bit of gambling, and was a lifelong, diehard Pittsburgh Steelers fan. His memorable smile and laugh will not be soon forgotten, but what defined Stephen was his honesty and integrity.

A visitation will take place 4-7pm, Friday, September 17, 2021, with a memorial service to begin at 7pm, at Tobias Funeral Home, Far Hills Chapel. A Celebration of Steve’s Life will be held the following evening, Saturday, September 18th. Contact Steve’s family for more details. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Shriners Children’s Ohio and their care of children with burn injuries: Online condolences may be left at


  • Visitation

    Friday, September 17, 2021

  • Funeral Service

    Friday, September 17, 2021


Stephen Ruef

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Patrick Smith

September 17, 2021

I worked with Steve for 18 years on the DFD, although Steve was a Captain on Ladder 11 and I was a " truckie" on Ladder 13, but we were at a lot of fires together. Steve also spent his last couple of years at Co.13 as a Safety Officer and was always quick witted and fun to hang out with. Steve, may you rest in peace brother and my deepest sympathies go out to the entire Ruef family.
Pat Smith

Duane Cramer

September 17, 2021

My condolences to Ann, Zack and Olivia for your loss. I worked, vacationed and celebrated with Steve for many years. His friendship and character was an inspiration throughout my life. I will miss him tremendously.

Glenn Alexander

September 17, 2021

Please allow me to express my deepest condolences to Steve's family. I went school with his brother Joe; and worked with Steve, his father, uncle, and cousins, on the fire department. I will miss our frequent conversations on the PipeStone golf course. Unfortunately, I am unable to express my condolences in person, due to COIVID protocols related to a family members care.
The Ruef family can take great pride in their dedication to serve others. May God give you peace.

Glenn Alexander

Reshauna Bolds

September 13, 2021

Steve was one of my favorite people and one of my biggest supporters!!! He always greeted me with a warm welcome and as I transitioned into my leadership role, he checked on me asking "Are you the boss yet??? Who do I need to speak to???" He was always encouraging and his voice remains in my head. His voice was always filled with enthusiasm in a manner that you knew if he cared about you!!!! I pray for the comfort of your family and thank you for sharing Steve with us here at MVH. He made a lasting impression and will be greatly missed.

Edward Ruef

September 12, 2021

I haven't seen Steve for sometime. The last time, if my memory is correct, was in 2014 at my Mom's (Marie Ruef) funeral. The thing I remember most about Steve, he always smiling and he enjoyed a good party.

My condolence to Ann, their children and his brothers and sisters.

Ed and Catherine Ruef

Chip Payne

September 12, 2021

Ann, Zack and Olivia. I’m so sorry for your loss. I absolutely loved Steve. I have so many great memories of him. From him being welcoming of me on Ruef family vacations as a child, to having some cold ones sharing laughs as he came thru Denver on his cross country treks, to him teaching me how to smoke a cigar just last summer at Jeff’s wedding. He could make me laugh like no other. He was in the perfect profession as a Captain in the fire department. I know I would’ve followed that man anywhere, including into a burning building. He was a true leader. Much love to all of you. I love you guys. Chip “Tater” Payne

Don Holtvoigt

September 12, 2021

My heartfelt sympathies for Ann and all the Ruef family. Many fond memories of hanging out with Steve and the “gang” as a young man, as well as being with the family in general. Always enjoyed his sense of humor and his zest for life. May all now suffering this untimely loss, be comforted in the warm and loving memories with this fine man. God bless.

Madelon Kinzig

September 12, 2021

Ann, Zach and Olivia, we are so sorry to hear of Steve’s shocking, and untimely passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you.

Madelon and Bill Kinzig

Chris Craves

September 12, 2021

Ann, Olivia, Zach, and Adam,
I am so sorry to learn of Steve's passing. He was always so much fun to be around and had everyone laughing. He will be missed. I'm thinking of you all.

Mary Jo Leopard

September 12, 2021

From happy memories of Steve at Holy Family to happy memories of Steve and Ann at Kramer’s .Steve was always smiling and fun to be around!! My thoughts and prayers are with you Ann and family.