Opinion » Commentaries

The loss of a hero and friend: Steven Seybold lived a life worth celebrating



Steven Seybold, a beloved long-time resident of San Luis Obispo, passed away on Feb. 17 in San Diego after succumbing to fatal injuries sustained in a fall.

* * *

Steven loved social events of all kinds. For many years, he was an active member of the SLO Skiers Club, SLO Blues Society, and served on the board for Chumash Village Mobile Home Park. As an avid photographer, he love to share photos of each event and was the official photographer for the ski club.

He was a very generous and giving person and was known for a willingness to help anyone who came into his life. Wherever he met someone who needed a friend or needed help, he would be there, offering assistance and his friendship. Often he volunteered to help neighbors with transportation and would volunteer to help friends move (really!).

After parties or social events, he liked to distribute surplus food and beverages. To the amusement of his friends, Steve loved to buy things at garage sales and distribute to whomever he thought might need them.

* * *

Steven had gone with friends to a yoga and meditation center in Manzanillo, Mexico, at the time of the accident. This was to be an opportunity to learn some new meditation techniques and to enjoy the beautiful surroundings there. But tragedy struck a few hours after arriving.

While he was sitting on a wall around a swimming pool terrace, talking with friends, a rail suddenly broke behind him. With helpless horror, his friends saw him fall backward down to a cobblestone street 27 feet below.

Steven needed to be transported to a major medical center equipped to address his critical medical needs. This was in the capital city of Coloma, 60 miles away. Arrangements were quickly made for his transport, thanks to assistance from the yoga center. A trauma team was waiting when he arrived, and he was rushed into surgery to stop internal bleeding. Then he was placed in a modern ICU where his recovery was anticipated.

He received many blood transfusions with donations from the local community, as he used up the blood bank supplies. Sadly, his injuries proved to be fatal.

He was very kind and believed in seeing the good in people he knew. Steven had a way of making each person feel special. He loved studying philosophy and was a member of the Lemurian Fellowship. Poetry was one of his passions, and he had many poems memorized that he enjoyed reciting to interested persons.

Constantly surrounded by close friends, sisters, and his girlfriend, Susan Mullen, he struggled valiantly to recover for seven weeks. He was eventually transported to a hospital in San Diego for evaluation and then to a hospice center where he passed away peacefully.

* * *

Steve was born June 13, 1951, in Washington, D.C. His family moved to Fairfield in 1963 when they were stationed at Travis Air Force Base. He graduated from Fairfield High School in 1969, attended Solano College, and went on to Cal Poly to earn a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Steve loved San Luis Obispo and made it his home after graduation. He worked for the city as its first crime prevention coordinator and developed that program for 15 years. Later, he continued his employment with the SLO Parks and Recreation Department before his retirement a few years ago. Steve was an active volunteer in his beloved community, giving of his time and helpful to others.

* * *

Friends are welcome to join us in celebrating Steve’s life on March 9 at 1 p.m. in San Luis Obispo at the Elks Lodge No. 322, 222 Elks Lane in San Luis Obispo.


Steve and Mary Silberstein live in Arroyo Grande. Send comments to the executive editor at rmiller@newtimesslo.com.

Add a comment