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Carothers Funeral Home at Gaston Memorial Park

2205 Williamsburg Drive, Gastonia, NC

OBITUARY

Stephen Douglas Cato

July 25, 1958May 11, 2020
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“A man who served his country, loved his family and was passionate about hunting.”

Stephen Douglas Cato, age 61, passed away on Monday ~ May 11, 2020 peacefully at home. He was born on July 25, 1958 in Norfolk, Virginia. Stephen was a proud United States Navy Veteran. He also was a member of the Good Hope for Hunting Club and very passionate about hunting, especially for deer and turkeys. After a successful hunt, he liked to have his game mounted. He also could be seen playing golf or bowling. While he had many hobbies, his biggest enjoyment in life was spending time with his family.

Those left behind to cherish Stephen’s memories is his loving wife, Diana Varnadore and their son, Chris Cato. Also grieving, is his brother, Tony Cato, as well as his two sister-in-laws Martha and Jan Varnadore and one mother-in-law, Louise Cook.

Stephen is the son of the late Franklin Douglas Cato and Frances Marie Hall. He is also proceeded in death by his father-in-law, Raymond Varnadore, and sister-in-law, Debbie Wentz.

A visitation will be held Wednesday ~ May 13, 2020 at 6:00pm until 8:00pm at Carothers Funeral Home at Gaston Memorial Park. A graveside service will be held Thursday ~ May 14, 2020 at 1pm.

Expressions of love and fond memories may be made on Stephen Cato’s guestbook at www.carothersfuneralhomegastonia.com

Stephen and his family are in the loving care of Carothers Funeral Home at Gaston Memorial Park.

Services

  • Receiving of Guests

    Wednesday, May 13, 2020

  • Life Well Celebrated Graveside Ceremony

    Thursday, May 14, 2020

Memories

Stephen Douglas Cato

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Danny Hall

May 14, 2020

Truly sorry to hear of Steve’s passing. Steve and I worked together for many years at FMC and shared many fond memories. He will surely be missed by all who loved him.

Buddy Richards

May 14, 2020

Great man, great husband and great father will be greatly missed my condolences to Diane and Chris

Bruce Wrenn

May 14, 2020

I considered it an honor to have known Steve, as well as work along side him at FMC. Steve, being the astute supervisor that he was, understood the necessity for maintenance in the work place. His desires for maximum production in Metal cause me to see and schedule maintenance at the most inopportune times. Not a fault, a management technique that drove me luny at times. As the Maintenance Supervisor for area 2 it was my daily task to help production; Steve made sure I never failed to do my job and for this I will always remember his professional mannerisms. I respected Steve, laughed with Steve and yes, at times, learned to disagree with Steve. This man made a lasting impression in my life. The world has lost a great man, and Heaven gained has one. Bruce W. Wrenn, former FMC Supervisor

Twanna Brown

May 14, 2020

Dear Diana, Chris and family,

I consider it an honor and blessing to have had the opportunity to work with Steve over my 29 years with FMC/Livent. Over the years, Steve remained the same. Always had a smile. Always had a kind word to share. Frequently asked about the well-being of my husband and sons. Steve exhibited tremendous character, honor and camaraderie. I admired Steve's relentless courage and strength. He remained positive throughout. Some of the best memories centered around sports and watching Steve's exuberance when Tar Heels entered the conversation.

Please accept my sincere condolences. May God ease the burden of your loss.

Christa McAllister

May 14, 2020

I met Steve and his son Chris at our wonderful place of employment, FMC/Livent. Steve always greeted me with a smile and a good laugh. He is missed, but will never be forgotten. Chris, may God's angels put their arms around you and your family during this time of bereavement. You have my sincere condolences.

Aleksandra Taylor

May 13, 2020

Over the past fours years at FMC/Livent I have had the pleasure of working with Steve. From day one of my career at FMC/Livent, Steve was very welcoming and extremely approachable. I always knew if assistance was needed, I could always ask him and he would do his best to help in any way he possibly could.
Recently, my family was affected by cancer and it was of great comfort to speak to Steve while we were going through those difficult times. As tough as it was to discuss the challenges facing my family, it was also almost therapeutic sharing with Steve as his genuine character and kind heart would provide perspective and offer sage advice. I am forever grateful for those moments.
Steve, we will miss you, your many talents and your friendship.
Please accept my sincere condolences on your loss.

Larry Spickard

May 13, 2020

I knew Steve for the last two years. He made an impression on me as a very strong individual through his trials and he was a great inspiration and example of hope should I ever have to face such trials. Very fortunate to have met him.

Bill Trees

May 13, 2020

Rest in Peace Steve, it was my great honor and privilege to get to know you during our time working together at FMC. To Chris, I know you will miss your dad, but know he will be there in our hearts forever. To the family I offer sincere condolences for your loss. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Becky Cerio

May 13, 2020

Steve was a mentor to me for my past (almost) 3 years at Livent (FMC). He also became a valued friend. Always there to share a smile and steal one of my peppermints that I kept in my candy bowl just for him (because he would complain when I ran out!). Discussions during basketball season about his Tarheels vs my Ky Wildcats, utilizing his vast knowledge and huge energy during the painful Physical Inventory, picking each other's brains for how to do things to make them better. Steve was a man of integrity, compassion and love. This man that pushed through so many difficult times will be remembered always. He will be dearly missed.
Respectfully,
Becky Cerio

Brian Melton

May 13, 2020

I was privileged enough to get to know Steve at work. He welcomed me when I started at the site in late 2018. I will always cherish the talks we had in his office and in mine about our salvation in knowing and loving Christ, how we discussed our families (how much we loved them), my friendship with his son and best friend Chris and his knowledge of the site. Steve was a great man of God and I will miss those talks. I am glad to know he is in Heaven above with Jesus, honoring and praising God and looking down on all of his family and friends and watching over us until the time comes when we will all meet again. Heaven gained a Saint and I was honored to know Steve and call him my friend. Till we meet again.....

FROM THE FAMILY
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