I am consistently learning to cherish each and every conversation I have with people. Last week, Steve Cardiff, MLA, former student and friend was killed in a car accident. It was a very sudden shock and suprise to all.
I started to think of the last time I had run into Steve. It was on Main Street within the last week or so, and both of us were running errands and didn’t have much time for a quick hello and apology for being rushed. I seriously regret that now and wished I’d had far more time for a quick gab on the side of the street as we often did.
I met Steve more than 15 years ago when he was taking an introductory computer course. The class ran in the evenings and I saw him in the hallway one morning talking with the Dean. We chatted for a bit and he left to do something and Aron, the Dean, pointed out that Steve was also, at the time, chair of the College Board of Governors. I have to admit being a bit gobsmacked over that, as the last impression you would have gotten from Steve is that he was anything other than just a regular person. He was a tradesman and proud of it. When he eventually took the plunge and ran for the MLA seat, and won, he was no different. He was always “just Steve,” and I will always continue to be impressed by that fact.
In the past few days, we have heard lots of stories about him. I’ll throw in one. Several years ago, we were both attending the same conference. During the first coffee break, when we were outside “checking the weather,” I asked Steve how things were going with his new job. He had just recently been elected for the first time. He said, “I have the greatest job in the world. I’m really amazed that people pay me to do this.” Since that job largely concerned helping people, I think that probably sums up what he was like more than anything else. Rest well, Steve. We will miss you…