Steven was born in Bellaire, Mich., on Jan. 27, 1959, the son of Raymond and Ida (Underhill) Linderleaf. He was raised in Rapid City, Mich., with his sister, Debbie, and brother, Tony, where he loved the woods, hunting and fishing. Steve graduated from Kalkaska High School in Kalkaska, Mich., in 1977. He was a proud Kalkaska Blazer, where he played football and wrestled.
Steve married Pamela Alspaugh in Alden, Mich., on Sept. 1, 1979. They resided in Alden until joining the Air Force in 1984, serving at Griffiss Air Force Base, Rome, N.Y., from 1984-1992, K.I. Sawyer AFB, Gwinn, Mich., from 1992-1995 and Minot AFB, Minot, 1995-2004.
Steve served his nation with pride from 1984 until his retirement in 2004. He was a participant in the Persian Gulf War and went to Iraq in 1991. Steve earned many awards including the Commendation Medal with three bronze oak leaf clusters, the Achievement Medal, the Longevity Service Awards Ribbon with three bronze oak leaf clusters, Southwest Asia Service Medal with one bronze service star and the National Defense Service Medal with one bronze service star.
Steve received his Department of Transportation-Federal Aviation Administration Airframe Powerplant-Mechanical Certificate (A & P) License in May 2000. He earned his Community College of the Air Force Association degrees in Aircraft Systems Maintenance Technology and Instructor of Technology and Military Science in 2002.
Upon retirement he worked at the Minot Air Force Base gas station as head mechanic and was an assistant coach for the Kenmare High School wrestling program. He took great pride in watching his son, Steven Jr., wrestle and was there to offer support, encouragement and advice. He happily watched his daughter, Andrea, marry Tony Topolski and have her son, Anthony, who he couldn’t stop buying things for. He was thrilled they lived nearby for those daily visits. Steve was proud of having daughter, Angela, in the military service and seeing her marry Airman Alex Smeltzer this past May. Angela pinned on his retirement pin, which was a big surprise for him, one that was planned and put into action by his family and Air Force personnel. He was a boastful Daddy of Andrea, Angela and Steven Jr. His children were what he considered his greatest accomplishment in life.
Steve enjoyed hunting and fishing with his kids. He taught them many things such as auto repair and made sure his girls especially knew basic auto knowledge so they wouldn’t have to rely on someone else. He will be greatly missed by his family and friends.
Survivors: wife, Pamela, Donnybrook; son, Steven R. Linderleaf Jr., Donnybrook; daughters, Andrea L. Topolski, Donnybrook, and Angela J. (Alex) Linderleaf-Smeltzer, Las Vegas; grandson, Anthony Topolski Jr., at home with mom; parents, Raymond and Ida Linderleaf, Rapid City, Mich.; and brother, Tony Linderleaf, Rapid City, Mich; Grandma Linderleaf, Travers City, Mich.
Steve was preceded in death by his sister, Debra (Linderleaf) Hiller, son Tony Topolski, Grandma and Grandpa Underhill and Grandpa Linderleaf.
Memorial service: Saturday, April 12, 2008, at 11 a.m. at the United Methodist Church, Donnybrook.
Friends may sign a register one hour prior to the service at the church.
Burial: Donnybrook Cemetery.
Those wishing to sign the online register and share memories may access the online obituaries section at (www.thompsonlarson.com).
(Thompson-Larson Funeral Home, Minot)