Obituary: Irving N. Steiner

Within a loving circle of family, in his favorite room at home, Irving N. Steiner, our dear husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend departed this earth, December 5th, 2015.

Irving was best known for his bold and engaging spirit, genuine interest in people, and the goings on in his world, big and small. He filled any room with his magnetic personality, slightly unhinged sense of humor, and strong moral compass. His passions and hobbies throughout his life were varied and always expanding.

As a young man he joined the Air Force, convincing his mother to authorize his enlistment at 17. He later worked for the CIA and the American Consulate in Istanbul with job-related travel to Japan, Guam, Washington DC, England, Sweden, and Cypress. He earned a degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Bridgeport where he met his wife, Industrial Design engineering student, Nancy Robel. They led an adventure-filled life, living in Indonesia and Germany, extensively traveling the world, and zooming around in their XKE Jag among other fun cars.

Eventually settling with his wife and children in Shelton Ct, Irving, riding his huge John Deere tractor, had fun on their rocky up and down property. He built an automated greenhouse, kept chickens, and planted an organic vegetable garden, saying: “I planted it, now you pick it.” Always interested in new technology, this forward-thinking engineer installed solar power at his home 40 years ago which is still operating to this day. Embracing progress in the 1980s, he converted a bedroom to house his computers, being the first “on the internet” in our family. No stranger to the kitchen, Irving’s specialties were his homemade pastrami, jerky, and smoked salmon. Many family vacations with the children, from California to Canada to Florida with a special trip to Washington D.C. in 1976 for the bicentennial. Traveling near and far continued following his 1994 retirement from Flygt Corporation, enjoying trips to Slovakia, Spain, Ireland, Fort Myers Beach, and a memorable cross-country drive to the west coast. He loved to play tennis, fish, even catching lobster bare-handed. Irving’s sailboats were aptly named to match his personality: “Why Not?” and “Carpe Diem”, words he lived by. Later trading a sailboat for a new tractor, Irving built a koi pond, gazebo, and award-winning flower garden. His global heroes were Patton, Churchill, and Truman. On a local scale, he established a citizens’ watchdog group, We R-1, to challenge over-development in Shelton, mindful of his reverence for nature and the environment. Speaking many times at City Hall meetings and writing letters to newspapers, he garnered support from citizens all over town.

As Irving grew older, he furthered his interest in and study of history, news, and current events, becoming more and more open-minded, accepting of all people and welcoming new ideas. He loved long conversations about “the world” with his beloved grandchildren, engaging them on so many topics and in an occasional game of chess.

Born July 30, 1929 in Port Chester, New York to Mildred Prinz Steiner and David Mordecai Steiner, Irving grew up in Larchmont, New York.

He was predeceased by two older brothers, Ralph (Patricia) and Jerome (Dorothy) Steiner, and nephew Gerald.

He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Nancy Robel Steiner, his daughter Remy Steiner Kocurek (Jaroslav), and son Lee David Steiner (Sharisse), six grandchildren: Adam, Wesley, Makenzie, Riley, Samuel, and Zachary, and nephew John Steiner, nieces Judy Conley and Barbara McGee.

There will be a private celebration to commemorate his life.