Obituary for Steve Hamala
Steve Theophil Hamala
October 15, 1924-May 21, 2017
Steve Theophil Hamala was the youngest of ten born on October 15, 1924, in Sealy, Texas, to Frank and Frances (Sliva) Hamala. On the Hamala family farm, Steve had not only his parents but his older siblings to teach him about life. They equipped him with important life skills such as honesty, integrity, resourcefulness, and a healthy work ethic which he eventually passed down to his 8 children. Steve married his beautiful bride, Dolphie Drozd, on February 7, 1945 at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Bay City, Texas. The union was officiated by Steve’s older brother Father Joseph Hamala. It was also the first marriage for Father Joseph Hamala to officiate in his 47 year dedication with the church. Steve moved his family to Houston in 1946 and began a career at Champion Paper Mill in Pasadena, Texas, that spanned almost 40 years. He transitioned to different departments throughout his years and even invented a specialty tool for valves that was used for many years. He was awarded several Safety Awards as well as awards for years of service.
In Steve’s earlier years, he was an altar boy, a member of CYO: Christian Youth Organization, and an usher in the Catholic Church. He helped build the school for St. Pius V as well as did extensive tractor work for the church’s property. He also volunteered to drive the nuns from St. Pius V’s convent to a San Antonio convent during the summer.
One of Steve’s greatest joys in life was helping people. Especially his family. He and his wife were blessed with four girls and four boys. Steve was not only a provider for his family but a teacher, a support system, and a caring helping hand. He taught his children how to build and fix things. Steve coached little league baseball/softball for his children and in later years, for his grandchildren. It was very important to him to know where he came from and where all his family tree branches led. As a result, he created the Hamala Family Directory in 1989 and hosted the first Hamala Family Reunion in 1990 which is still currently held every two years. With the directory and reunions he was encouraged to make several trips to Czech Republic and meet extended Czech family and bringing some of his own children to share the memories.
Steve was always happy when he was around his family and seeing his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He loved his Houston Astros, playing dominoes, going to church, making and eating kolaches, hunting, fishing, watching M*A*S*H, and fixing things.
Steve is preceded in death by his loving wife, Dolphie; infant son, Larry; parents, Frank and Frances (Sliva) Hamala; grandparents, Vaclav and Mary (Vasicek) Sliva in Texas; grandparents, George and Veronica (Trckova) Hamala; great-grandparents, Joseph and Anna (Rumanoua) Hamala in Czech Republic. Brothers, Father Joseph Hamala, Ludwik and wife Emilie Orsak, Frank and wife Rosie Saha, Dominik and wife Marie Sarao, John and wife Mary Hahn, Emil and wife Julie Matula, James and wife Cecilia Rozycki. Sisters, Frances and husband John Hauerland; and Otilia and husband August Hickl. Son-in-laws, Robert Sherrod, Douglas Byrd, and Roy Kasprzak.
Steve is survived by his children Katharine and son-in-law Paul Hofmeier, Bernice Sherrod, Edward and daughter-in-law Sharon Brookhart, Daniel and daughter-in-law Barbara Hamala, Diane Byrd, Laverne Kasprzak, Steven and daughter-in-law Melanie Hamala. Also, 17 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren, numerous cousins including Iveta Cantwell and many other special extended family members.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of Steve Hamala to Project Joy & Hope, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital or your favorite charitable organization.
Project Joy & Hope St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital www.joyandhope.org www.stjude.org
PO Box 5111, Pasadena, TX 77508