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May
2
2021

May 02, 2021

This is most likely the last entry on Caring Bridge.  Those of you following Steve’s cancer journey have been there in prayer and encouragement and it was deeply appreciated.  Yesterday was his memorial service.  It was beautiful and can be viewed on the Santa Rosa Christian Church YouTube channel.  I am so very proud of my sister, Maggie,  and my nieces and nephews as each spoke of a husband and father that left a legacy of unwavering commitment to Christ and to their family. Maggie feels the weight of guiding her children and grandchildren as Steve would, and she is proving to be very much up to the task.  This behind-the-scenes woman has amazed me with her grace, authenticity and strength.

2020 made Steve a physically ill man, but 2021 made him a new creation.  All earthly things passed away and we continue to grieve the tremendous loss in our lives.  Steve was robbed of his vitality but not his vision for his family, his friends, his church, his mission.  Cancer made his body frail, but his faith was  strong and true with every breath.  At the memorial, as friends shared story after story of Steve’s generosity, wisdom, devotion and love, we were reminded anew of the great privilege it was to know him and be known by him.  

The world is a different place without him, but not a lesser place.  Too much has been poured into us by Steve to let the chasm of his death remain open.  He has passed the torch of faith to hundreds, thousands!  We are changed by Christ, and we know Christ better because if this servant, this man of God, this pastor of pastors. He will forever be the kindest man I have ever known. I love him deeply.



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April
29
2021

April 29, 2021

"Surely the righteous will never be shaken; they will be remembered forever" Psalms 112.  This was part of a daily Bible reading and how appropriate it is when thinking about Steve Marshall.

This Saturday, May 1st, a memorial service will be conducted to honor and remember him and his life.  The service is at 10:00 at Spring Hills Church, 3700 Fulton Road, Santa Rosa, CA.  It will also be live-streamed on the Santa Rosa Christian Church's Youtube channel, and will be available on that channel for viewing afterwards.

A celebration, for sure; so hard for us but so full of hope. Please join us, either in person or online. Each of you was important to Steve.  

April
6
2021

April 6, 2021

Good morning all.  I have information regarding Steve's Celebration of Life, May 1st at 10:00 a.m.  The service will take place at Spring Hills Church, 3700 Fulton Road, Santa Rosa, CA.  Following is a copy of the obituary that has been submitted to the Press Democrat for publication.  Thank you so much, Jean-Marie Jobs for writing.


Steven Allen Marshall died peacefully at his home in Santa Rosa on January 16th at age 65, from complications of MDS, a pre-leukemia condition.  He was surrounded by his loving family: wife Maggie, sons Bobby, Allen and Teddy and daughters Jessica and Abby, as well as several of his grandchildren.  Steve served faithfully at Santa Rosa Christian Church since 1977, first as Youth Pastor then as Senior Pastor since 2002.

Steve was an avid worshiper and often sang and played guitar in service and at youth camps. He traveled with the high school youth choir for over 30 years, singing in convalescent and retirement homes.

He was an active member of Together in Christ, the local pastors' and ministry alliance focused on promoting love and unity within the Body of Christ in Sonoma County.  Steve's heart for unity in our community and for the next generation of leaders was evident.

As a native of Southern California, Steve grew up with his two sisters, Pam and Karen.  As a young man, he loved surfing and enjoyed being outdoors.  He graduated from Pacific Christian College in Fullerton, CA in 1977.

He married Maggie on June 3, 1978.  Together they raised their family here.  Steve treasured his time serving as a coach for his sons and daughters soccer, baseball and basketball teams.  Over the years, Steve and Maggie opened their homes to many individuals and families.  Generous with their hospitality and service to others, they became a welcome refuge to those in need.

Steve will be remembered as a man who loved well.  His grace and passion for Jesus imprinted every life he touched.  He was a wise and faithful man, a 'pastor's pastor'.

Celebration of Life will be held at Spring Hills Church in Santa Rosa on Saturday May 1st at 10:00 a.m.  For additional information, contact Santa Rosa Christian Church 707-542-0872.

If you would like to send a card or remembrance, please send it c/o Santa Rosa Christian Church, 1315 Pacific Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA 95404.

January
20
2021

January 20, 2021

"I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith."

If ever there was a Christian who could claim this as his life, it was Steve Marshall.  Steve received his ultimate healing last Saturday evening, January 16, 2021, when his soul was released from his body to enter into the kingdom of Heaven.
 
Friday, January 15,  he rallied enough to make some important phone calls that left him exhausted.  He slept the rest of the day with family always at his side, touching him and talking to him.  Praying for him.  Later that evening, the hospice nurse made a visit.  He was visibly touched by Steve's countenance, his devotion to Christ.  A visit that was supposed to be only a few minutes stretched out to over a half hour.  He was reluctant to leave and promised to come by over the weekend.

The family was prepared for Steve to not wake up again, but very early Saturday morning, about 4:00 a.m., he woke and insisted on speaking with a good friend who had recently lost his wife.  After several tries, Maggie was able to get the friend on the phone.  Steve blessed him and imparted words of legacy upon him.  What an incredible gift!

Surely, that would be no more moments as beautiful as this, but Steve gifted his family one last time.  Bobby was holding his toddler daughter, Dre, and asked her to give her Papa a kiss.  As he leaned over so she could kiss his forehead, Steve pursed his lips as though he was kissing her back.  So tender and so full of this man's love for this little girl and all his children and grandchildren.  A few hours later, Steve gently and peacefully left this world behind.

The past few days have been difficult but filled with the assurance of everlasting life through Christ Jesus.  Jessica, Bobby, Abby, Allen and Ted have selflessly given all they could to attend to their father and to comfort their mother.  They did the hard work over the past weeks and continue to support and love and help with decisions.  Sunday, Rob and the Morgan children arrived, and there were some happy moments of cousins being together.

At some point there will be a Celebration of Life to remember and honor Steve.  There is no date for this as of yet.  If you like, please feel free to write a memory or a sentiment about Steve.  Some of these may be included as part of that celebration.  These can be given or mailed to Maggie or to Don or Debbie Rinkor.

Maggie is going to travel to Southern California to stay with Rob and Jessica for awhile.  She is taking some needed time off to rest and get stronger.  

This is not what we wanted.  This is not what we expected.  This is sad and confusing and feels so very unfair.  Blessed be the name of the Lord.

Thank you, friends, for walking this awful journey with the Marshall family.  Thank you for continuing to lift up Maggie and the children and grandchildren up in prayer.  Thank you for loving Steve.  Thank you for loving God.  

January
16
2021

January 16, 2021

Steve is sleeping most of the time, but definitely has lucid moments that are such a blessing to the family.  He has face-timed with Jess and Rob's girls. So hard but so breathtakingly beautiful.  He is receiving Hospice care, but mostly care from Maggie and the kids.  There is never a moment that he is not being touched and talked to. 

He is not in pain.  Karen, his sister, arrived earlier this week and he was so happy to see and talk a little bit with her.  

There is so much love in this house right now.  There is so much love in this house always.  Part of that will be diminished soon when Steve has his homecoming, but he has stored up and passed on so much wisdom, so much directive on how to fully live for Jesus this side of heaven.  We have all received the gift that is Steven Marshall.  

Posting isn't easy and I know all of you are concerned and want to know how to pray.  I'm not sure how many more posts there will be.  Please know all of you are thought of every day and all of us here know we are being sustained by your prayers and love.  Thank you, thank you.

January
13
2021

‎January‎ ‎12‎, ‎2021

Oh dear ones, how this last post has upended you a bit.  Every one of you is so special and so valued by Steve and Maggie, but there's that - every.  single.  one. of. you.  14,000 views on this site - your love and outpouring of prayer and support is overwhelming!  Right now, though, it's important that you confine your communication with the Marshall family to this site or a card.  Please do not text or call at this time. They do not have the emotional or physical resources to interact individually with you right now.  I know you understand.  It's so hard when we all love them so much, but the greatest gift you can give them is the space to care for Steve and each other.

That is the greatest gift, but there is another way you can support them, if God calls you to.  An account has been set up at Redwood Credit Union by Deb Rinkor.  If you feel lead to support Steve and Maggie in a financial way, you can send a check, payable to Maggie Marshall,  to Deb at her home address; 3300 Henry Lane, Santa Rosa, CA 95401. 

It's humbling how much this family is loved.  Thank you, always, thank you for your comments here and your constant prayers and support.

January
12
2021

January 12, 2021

“God’s mercies in disguise”.  I’m listening to Laura Story’s “Blessings” as I’m typing up this post.  It has been a difficult week but one covered in God’s mercies.  Praise the Lord, oh my soul.

This past weekend Steve declined pretty significantly.  His greatest wish was to be home from the hospital and that has happened.  The kids are all assembled and helping and loving on him and blessing him as he has blessed them.  Last night he was transported from Stanford to Santa Rosa, arriving about 3:30 a.m.  All day yesterday, Maggie and the kids worked to get what he would need –namely a hospital bed and oxygen  His case nurse stated that it was remarkable that everything was in place by last night.  This afternoon he will meet his home health care nurse.

He is not on Hospice care, but he is on palliative care.  All the associated health professionals are doing everything possible to make his life as comfortable as possible.  He is working towards trying to get mobile enough to be able to get blood and platelets.  Right now it’s taking all the kids to support him in a sitting position, so that’s a big goal, but not one that’s too big if it’s God’s will.

He is resting and enjoying his family.  That is today’s mercy.  Please leave your dear messages here and please pray for Steve.  Maggie is using all the energy she has to meet Steve’s needs.  She so appreciates each of you, as does the entire family.  How thankful are all of us to know the Marshall’s?

January
8
2021

January 8, 2021

Steve is improving!  Such good news.  Jessica spoke with him this morning and was so pleased that he was able to speak a little better.

The cultures from his lung procedure have failed to grow anything.  YAY!!!!!  No one has definitively said that he does not have a fungal infection, but the fact that he's improving and nothing is growing in the culture points towards excluding that as a possible source.  

His next big step will be getting out of bed.  He is managed to sit on the side of the bed for a moment or two, but gets dizzy.  He can lift his legs on his own (couldn't do that a few days ago) so it won't be long before he'll be up.

What a great report!  I know you are as encouraged as I am by his progress.  

"He will take delight in you with gladness.  With His love, He will calm all your fears.  He will rejoice over you with joyful song." (Zephaniah 3:17)