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July 16, 2014

Steven B. Powell

UTICA — Steven B. Powell of Utica has departed this life for an eternal one with our Lord and Savior on Wednesday morning, July 16, 2014.

Steve was born the eldest of eight children to Kenneth (Sol) Powell and Alda B. Rupp Powell on Oct. 4, 1951, in Punxsutawney.

His elementary class was the last to attend the one-room schoolhouses in Pennsylvania (Goheenville, Calhoun and Oliver) before attending and graduating from Dayton Joint High School in 1969. Throughout high school, Steve had worked for several farmers in the area of making hay. Two families Steve particularly enjoyed working for were Bud Dill and Merle Powers. Bud and Merle were just fantastic and treated Steve like their own families. Since Steve didn’t have a license yet, they’d pick him up after milking and bring him home after ice cream and either cake or pie.

After high school, he attended and graduated from Vale Technical Institute with a degree in auto mechanics and auto body. He worked for Guido Oldsmobile in West Kittanning as a mechanic, and Kittanning Marine as lead mechanic/service manager, before making a career change into telecommunications with Northern Telecom in 1977.

On the subject of work, he held quite a few jobs, and never received a decent paycheck until hiring onto Northern Telecom, where they sent him to work in 44 different states, plus a few sites in Canada. Steve received several awards for saving money, and generating sales, performing emergency recoveries and troubleshooting extensive problems. He relocated to Raleigh, N.C., area in 1985 where he served in several engineering and manager posts within Installation Service, Research and Development, and Customer Service. As one of the 100 percent home-based employees he moved back to northwest Pennsylvania area in 1996 as an installation technical service representative until the demise of the corporation in 2007. Steve and his wife began a small lawn/landscape company in 2008 which they closed in 2013 due to his failing health.

Steve married the former Karen L. Barnard Chess, who survives, in March 2001. Additional survivors include three sons, Brian Chess of Utica, Kevin (Lisa) Chess of Ashtabula, Ohio, and Clinton Chess of Meadville; six grandchildren, Brendan Chess of Ashtabula, Austin Chess, and Westin Chess of Meadville, Carissa Chess and Morgan Chess of Meadville, and Steven Hollen of Cochranton. Additional survivors include Steve’s mother, Alda B. Powell of Templeton; six siblings, Melodye (Glenn) Buzzard of Templeton, Deric (Kathy) Powell of Grove City, Kevin Powell of Worthington, Neal (Lisa) Powell of Slippery Rock, Sheila Reesman of Templeton and John (Jaimie) of Rochester; 12 nieces and nephews, Josh (April) Powell of Grove City, Janal (Chuck) Crissman of Grove City, Justin (Heidi) Powell of Slippery Rock, Jonathan Powell of Slippery Rock, Dulcey Buzzard of Templeton, Levi Shock of Pittsburgh, Lindsey (Robert) Strength of Ford City, Alana Brocious of Distant, Jenna Buzzard of Aliquippa, Ashton Walker of Aliquippa, Savannah Walker of New Bethlehem and Jacob Powell of Rochester.

Steve was a member of the Telephone Pioneers Association, a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association and a lifetime member of Harley Owners Group. Hobbies included riding his Harley Davidson, hunting, fishing, watching NASCAR, Steelers and Penguins, spending time with family and friends, and he found his most enjoyment hanging out with the grandchildren he fondly referred to as plinker plonkers.

He was preceded in death by his father, Kenneth (Sol) Powell; and a sister, Kimber Lee Walker.

One viewing will be held at the Sandy Lake Funeral Home of Scott A. Black at 3236 S. Main St. Sandy Lake, on Friday evening from 7 to 9, followed by a second viewing held at the Oakland Church of God, 122 Kohlersburg Road, Distant, Saturday from 1 a.m. to 2 p.m. The funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, with Pastor Jimmy Swogger officiating.

Interment will be in Belknap Cemetery, Wayne Township, Armstrong County.

All guests are requested to dress as you’re attending a family reunion in jeans, nice shirt, etc., as this is a celebration of Steve’s new life.

Arrangements are under the direction of Alcorn Funeral Home in Hawthorn.

Online condolences can be sent to the family at alcornfuneralhome.com.

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