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Remmert Funeral Home

OBITUARY

Stephan Michael Bahnfleth

August 24, 1945April 9, 2021

Stephan Michael Bahnfleth, age 75, of Peoria, formerly of East Peoria, passed away Friday, April 9, 2021 at 3:43 p.m. at OSF St Francis Medical Center in Peoria.

He was born Aug. 24, 1945 in Peoria to William and Margaret (Sackwitz) Bahnfleth. He grew up and attended high school in East Peoria. He married Suzanne Allgood Carter on Jan. 13, 1984 in Peoria, which included 3 children of the heart. She survives along with, his brother Paul (Alice) Bahnfleth of Morton, his stepchildren Michelle (Roger) Potter of Bartonville, Kathy (Ken) Toureene of Milwaukee and David Crawford of East Peoria. Grandchildren: Sarah (Daniel) Gerdes, Katie Toureene, Abbey Toureene, Chase Crawford, Seth Potter, Emilee Toureene and Gabe Toureene. Great Grandchildren: Nolan Daniel Gerdes and the anticipated excitement of his Great Granddaughter this July. Nieces & Nephews: Billy Bahnfleth, Chuck (Farrah) Bahnfleth, Angie (Mark) Lensmeyer, Kelly Bahnfleth Mayberry & Amy (Darnell) Salley .

He was preceded in death by his parents and one brother, Bill Bahnfleth and niece Terri Sue Bahnfleth. Stephan served in the Army from 1965-1967 serving in Germany. Stephan’s life included many adventures. His escapades were shared with captive audiences. He never knew a stranger and was always a friend to everyone he met. His laughter and his kindness will be missed by all of us. In 1967, he went out to Half Moon Bay, California and lived the life of a lovable hippee until returning to Illinois in 1982. He had so many stories we were always so amazed. We would often say to him it was like Forrest Gump, he literally did so much living, met so many people along his journey. Stephan attended Woodstock, he was a roadie for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and remained friends with Neil Young until his death. He also was a roadie for Fleetwood Mac and loved the Eagles, James Taylor and many more. He lived in the Redwoods of California with his dog “Bokawah” which means friendly protector. He was part shepherd and wolf and Stephan’s constant companion. He hitchhiked, did gold mining, lived out of a VW Van, lived the true life of a hippee. He returned to Peoria in 1982 and hitchhiked all the way from California to Illinois when he heard his mother was passing of cancer.

In 1984, he married Suzanne and became a “Bonus Dad” to her three children. He always said he wasn’t a Dad and didn’t know how to be a Dad but his stepchildren would completely disagree. He loved them as his if they were his very own. Stephan was a dearly loved “Papa” by his 7 grandchildren and spoke of each of them always with great pride and love.

He graduated from Canton Junior College / ISU with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and became a teacher for District 86 and taught for 20 years. He taught at Central Junior High, Glendale & Schute Schools. He had a special heart for teaching and for those children who were at risk.

Stephan loved the Chicago Cubs and the Bears. He loved playing poker. He loved his lottery tickets and having his grandchildren scratch them off for him. He had a great love for animals too. His doggies were his kids. Ketchup, Shelby, Shadow, Bokawah, and Marrakesh #1 are probably all on his lap right now. He was a great, great lover of music. He was able to name song, artist and sing lyrics from memory. A favorite game to play at family gatherings was “Name That Tune with Papa”. He took his last breath to the song “49 Bye Bye’s” by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.

During his retirement, Stephan and Susie enjoyed camping with friends, family and the loves of their lives, their dogs Marrakesh #2 & Sassy. He loved feeding the birds, squirrels and just enjoying God’s beautiful nature.

Stephan was a member of First Christian Church in Peoria for 37 years and was a deacon and an elder and enjoyed many Bible Studies through the years. He knew Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior, had a great faith in God, read his Bible daily and loved serving the Lord. 2 Timothy 4:7 “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith”. We know that Our Lord said, Well done my good and faithful servant. We believe that when Stephan saw the face of Jesus for the first time, he smiled and said Far Out Man.

Cremation rites have been accorded. There will be no visitation. A private celebration of life will be held by the family at a later date. Remmert Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Burial will be in Fondulac Cemetery at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Peoria Humane Society.

Services

  • Inurnment at later date

Memories

Stephan Michael Bahnfleth

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Heather Gray

May 15, 2021

I have so many wonderful memories of Stephan it’s hard to know where to begin. I met Stephan in LaHonda with Wally in the early 80’s. . He always had a smile on his face and was loved by many... We moved to Illinois in ‘88 when our daughter was born and the biggest treat was being able to see Stephan ( and Susie) who were now living in Peoria, Ill. I send my heartfelt condolences and love to Susie and family for their loss although Stephan will always be with you.❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

sharon Kasten

April 18, 2021

My condolences to Steve's family and friends. He was one of my very best high school friends, and stole my heart the first day I met him. Loving, kind, and never a harsh word. I lost track of Steve for some years, but seeing him at high school reunions is a memory I treasure. We never had enough time to get reacquainted as we lived miles apart, but I thought of him often. He was "that guy", the one you wouldn't see for years, then upon meeting again, our friendship seemed just like we'd never been apart. To Susie, I know and feel your pain. Losing your soul mate is so sad. Blessings to you and your family, and I know Steve waits for all of us in heaven!!! God bless! Sharon Allison Kasten

Roger and Debbie Kardinal

April 16, 2021

These are a couple of pictures, of Stephen & Susie, with us in LaHonda, CA

Roger and Debbie Kardinal

April 16, 2021

We knew and loved Stephen, from LaHonda, CA. Boots and Saddle restaurant/bar. Roger played music and Stephen probably has his CD's still. He was an amazing friend and we had many adventures together in our hippie days. After he met and married Susie, they came out and visited us, in Tracy, CA. He was able to see our daughter, Wendi and meet our son Shaun. Our mutual friends, Faun, and Patti, also came out from LaHonda to see them, while there. He had the same birthday as Roger, but was 5 years his senior. They would joke about being "twin brothers from different mothers". Stephen was a friend to all who met him and a very dear friend to us.

Brian ******

April 14, 2021

To care for you and your family in your last days was truly an honor. To get to know you and your family in such a short time warmed my heart. I wish all of you peace.

Chad Gale

April 13, 2021

Loved Mr. B. Singing in class to the Church Bells at noon and his smiling face and humor!He also read Jonathon Livingston Seagull to us.I also remember him loving Red Skelton and teaching us about him.You made a difference in this world Mr.B! Praying for his family...His brother Paul,Wife and Children and the extended Bahnfleth family... SendingLove and Prayers to the Bahnfleths.

Dani Winders

April 12, 2021

I have so many fond memories of Steve and Susie too! So many good times at cookouts and gatherings of all kinds. That voice of his. And his kind, supportive, sweet way of being. What a wonderful soul! Say hi to dad for me. I know he will be happy to see you! XXOO

Holly Duke

April 12, 2021

My condolences to the family. All the Bahnfleths at CJHS, including Grandpa B, will always hold a special place in my heart.

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY