Obituary of Willie Carl Stephens
Willie Carl Stephens 'Bear' went home with his 'Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ' on March 3, 2023 after a long battle with heart disease.
He was born June 2, 1956 in Memphis, Tennessee. He was predeceased by his parents Mr. & Mrs.Walter & Rachel LeFerve.
Bear is survived by his loving wife Sigrid Stephens of Farmingdale, Maine, his sister Carol Shirley of Arkansas and family from the Philippines.
Bear graduated from La Porte High, Texas, 1973 and enlisted in the Air Force October,1975-1981. He was stationed in San Vito Italy, and was trained in Morse System Operation.
Upon his Honorable Discharge, he went to Fort Meade, Maryland and served in the National Security Agency as a 'Morse Code Encoder' for 17 years before moving to Maine.
His last employer prior to his illness was the 'Best Western Plus', Augusta, ME.
The first love of his life was his 'Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ'. His relationship with Jesus as his Savior began on June 5th, 1971 and he served him ever since.
Bear loved to study God's Holy Word. He had a vast knowledge of the Bible. He didn't just read the Word. He believed it to be God's truth and wanted all people to know Jesus Christ as their Savior.
Bear attended Grace Community Chapel (GCC), in W. Gardiner. A great joy of his was being with his church family. He loved children and taught Sunday School many years. He loved to sing and was on the Worship Team.
He was on the Operation Christmas Child (OCC) Team. His passion was to have needy children across the globe feel loved by God and to have the opportunity to learn about the greatest gift Jesus Christ. He loved collecting items with Sigrid for the shoeboxes and introduce OCC to their friends and co-workers.
Bear was a humble man who had many gifts and talents. He never thought highly of himself. He always thought of others first. He never wanted to be the star he wanted to be a support person. He was great at encouraging others.
He had many interests:He loved to read and write poetry. He wrote Sigrid hundreds of love letters/notes.
He loved: music, to sing, to compose songs and play the guitar.
He had been active in sports, bowling, baseball, football and softball. He organized a Little League Softball Team which he was proud of.
He loved his Marvel & DC Comic Superheros comic books, shirts and socks.
On September 8, 2005 Bear married the Love of his life, Sigrid and they had 17 precious years together. He was the “ perfect” husband.
Bear loved their date nights which were eating out and a movie. He and Sigrid loved taking long drives and one even ended up in Canada.
He loved his trips to the Philippines visiting with family and swimming and their beaches.
Bear loved to be with Sigrid and the community of Filipino friends. He is God Father to several of their children. He loved singing and dancing to Karaoke with them.
Bear had a very generous spirit and he supported children in the Philippines, he would buy their school supplies. He helped others whenever he could.
The last week of Bear's life was extraordinary. For over a year Bear had been paralyzed. Spending most of the time at several different faciities in ME and MA he never complained and took the good, the bad and the ugly news gracefully. He was making great progress hoping one day he may walk again. Things happened and his health deteriorated quickly.
Bear chose to stop all things that were keeping him alive. He wanted to go home and be with the Lord. After all things were stopped or disconnected he felt an amazing Joy that very evening. Full of joy he had Sigrid called 30 of their family and friends because he wanted to be sure they heard how they could 'some day' join him in heaven. He told them of Jesus love for them and led them in prayer to receive Christ as their Savior.
I would like to thank the following:
*The Veterans Affair in ME and MA for giving Bear the utmost care he needed.
My heartfelt gratitude to all the Health Care Workers, Doctors, Nurses, and CNA's
that attended to his needs.
*Special mention to his Home Health Nurse Ashley and CNA Erika
for taking great care of Bear so he could enjoy his stay at home.
*The Special Care Unit and Hospice Unit at the VA for making the last few weeks of Bear's
life comfortable and his needs accomadated.
* Lastly, thank you to our Grace Community Chapel family, our Filipino-American Community, Carol (sister), our family and relatives from the Philippines. Thank You!