Dr. Stephen L. Williams

Dr. Stephen L. Williams, 70, died Tuesday, July 31, 2018 in Waco.

Visitation: 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. Thursday, August 2, at Lake Shore Funeral Home, 5201 Steinbeck Bend Drive, in Waco.

Graveside Service: 10:00 a.m. Friday, August 3, 2018 at Oakwood Cemetery, 2124 South 5th Street, in Waco with Rev. Curtis Holland officiating.

Steve was born June 30, 1948, in Midland to Angela and Jacob L. Williams III. He was an Eagle Scout and graduated from Midland High School, received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Biology and a master’s degree in Museum Science from Texas Tech University. He earned his doctorate in Conservation from the University of Goteborg in Goteborg, Sweden.

In the summer of 1971, he married Kathleen Dobbs. They had two children, Sarah and Jason.

Steve began his career with The Museum at Texas Tech University as a collection manager and later moved to Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, PA. In 1990, he returned to The Museum at Texas Tech and taught Museum Science. In 1995, he moved to The Strecker Museum, later known as The Mayborn Museum Complex, at Baylor University and taught Museum Studies. He published many research papers over the course of his career. Upon retirement in 2007, he continued to work with students when needed.

Since his retirement, Steve has enjoyed traveling with his family, hunting, fishing, playing with and going on dam walks with his dog and grandkids.

Steve was preceded in death by his parents.

He is survived by his loving wife of nearly 47 years; daughter, Sarah and her husband, Allen Kaiser; son, Jason L. Williams and his wife, Angel; grandchildren, Will, Ben, Maddie and Jon Kaiser and Julianne, Anson, Josephine and Jacqueline Williams; sisters, Kathy Buckberry and her two sons and family and Anne and her husband, Jim Busby and their two daughters; brother, Jacob L. Williams IV; his uncle, Ignatius G. Peters and his family; his aunt, Sue Peters Brady and her family; and many relatives and friends.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Dup15q Alliance.

Place of Service: Oakwood Cemetery , 2124 S.5th St.; Waco, TX 76706



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Condolence Messages

  1. My deepest condolences to Steve’s family. He was a fine academician and a man of principle. I admired him.

  2. Kathy,

    I am so sorry to hear if the passing of Steve, as you know he was loved by many and was a really nice person. I will always treasure my memories of cousin Steve.

    Caroline

  3. I was sorry to hear of Steve’s passing. He was a great scientist and helped many through his long career. I only knew him the years he worked at Carnegie Museum where he contributed to a very successful Mammal Department. From the video posted though, it would seem his greatest accomplishment was raising his kids and being a wonderful grandfather to his grandchildren. I am especially sorry that they don’t get to grow up with him as great model of a loving and giving human.

  4. Very Shocked to hear of Dr. Steve’s passing. (As we lovingly
    called him). He was so professional as a teacher and
    scientist, but so patient with us. Always willing to help
    us, and I know he helped many students to publish
    their work. One of my greatest joys was to have had
    several classes with him. A great visionary to see what
    the museum profession could be. We love you.

  5. It was a privilege to learn from you and develop my passion for museum studies. Thank you Dr. Steve. Your legacy will live on in your family as well as your students.

  6. I am very saddened by the death of Steve. I considered he and Kathy not only business friends but personal friends. Steve will be greatly missed by his family and friends. He was a very nice, kind and gentile person.

  7. I worked with Dr. Steve for seven years and he was also my professor. Dr. Steve was a phenomenal teacher and wonderful boss. I will miss him dearly. He always took the time to help students and fostered a passion for museum studies. He was a great scientist and a truly kind human being. My thoughts are with his family.

  8. His passing is such a loss to the profession. He was an inspiration to many of us. It was a privilege to learn from him. Our prayers for peace and comfort will continue for his family and those he loved.

  9. I was one of those students he helped even after he left Baylor. He is a great human being and he was always an amazing mentor. I hope to emulate him in so many ways.

  10. Joyce and Hugh Genoways

    Our deepest sympathy to Kathy, Sarah, and Jason and your families. We are shocked and saddened by Steve’s passing. You will be in our thoughts during the next difficult days. We had a great 15 years in Lubbock and Pittsburgh and Steve was an essential part of the success that we had. We will remember him for his hard work, honesty, modesty, and dependability. He had a great career as a mammalogist and contributed even more to the development of the fields of museum studies and the care of research collections. Memories flood back about the good times spent in field work all over the world, at scientific meeting, days in the mammal collections, and family parties. The world is definitely a lesser place without Steve in it.

  11. My deepest sympathy to Kathy and your families. It is with great fondness that I remember knowing and working with Steve during his times at Carnegie, Tech and Baylor; and especially recall the energy and passion he put into SPNHC – to make it the best it might become. A pleasure to have known Steve – and to have had the privilege to work with him on a number of endeavors.

  12. Sue and Andy McLaren

    Tonight we are thinking of Kathy, Sarah, Jason and their families with great sympathy. This is very sad news, indeed. I shared an office with Steve for more than a decade in Pittsburgh and knew him as a guy who worked hard at whatever he did. He was a genuinely nice person who patiently shared his knowledge. He was an excellent field mammalogist and a driving force in the ‘birth’ and lasting success of the Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections. Steve called me several months ago and we talked for more than an hour, catching up on all kinds of things. I guess it was that call that made me think about him on June 30th, when I registered that he was turning 70. I’m so sorry that he didn’t get more time for everything he held dear.

  13. Calvin B. Smith

    Steve was a dear friend and colleague and the consument biologist, museumist and professor. I am greatly saddened in learning of his passing. Many of us will regret not enough time spent with him in recent years, especially pursuing the details of our environment he was apt at pointing out and explaining. He helped in countless ways in the planning and building of the Strecker Museum into the Mayborn Museum Complex. His extraordinary research and writing will live on and his students will continue his legacy. My most sincere heartfelt thoughts, condolences and sympathy are with Kathy, Jayson, Sarah and their families. I miss him already.

  14. John W. Bickham

    I am deeply saddened to learn of Steve’s passing. I knew him since 1973 and have always admired his low-key, easy going personality. He knew more about mammals than just about anyone, and was always willing to share his knowledge with students and fellow scientists. He was very humble but had every right to be proud of his many significant contributions to mammalogy. His children and grandchildren can be so proud of this wonderful man they called father and grandfather. Like all of you, I will miss him too.

  15. My association with Steve goes back to the late 1970’s, when Steve was affiliated with the Museum Studies program at The Museum, Texas Tech and I was a master’s student at Texas A&M. Our paths sporadically intersected over the years, mainly at professional conferences and in relation to our shared interest in the biogeography and systematics of our favorite mammals—pocket gophers. And, as many of you will recall, Steve was one of the authors of the Baker & Williams pocket-gopher live traps, a device that has benefited the research and teaching programs of many of us. My faculty career has been spent at Baylor University, and it was my great delight that Steve joined the Museum Studies faculty at Baylor where he spent the final years of his faculty career. We had many enjoyable conversations about mammals and museums during his time at Strecker Museum and Mayborn Museum here in Waco. Our Baylor students benefited tremendously from Steve’s knowledge and his gentle spirit. We will miss Steve very much.

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