In memory: Stephen J. Gunther

Stephen John Gunther, 74, of Dubuque passed away Sunday, Dec. 30, at home.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 5, at Hoffmann Schneider and Kitchen Funeral Home & Cremation Service, 3860 Asbury Road, Dubuque, Iowa. Friends can greet the family at 10 a.m. until time of service.

Steve was born Sept. 16, 1944, in LeMars, Plymouth County, Iowa, son of Clem and Arlyne (Koerner) Gunther. He married Susan Ann LeRette, July 11, 1987, at the Memorial Drive United Methodist Church in Houston, Texas.  In 2011, Steve and Susan moved back to the Midwest, to Dubuque, to be close to Susan’s family.

Steve graduated from LeMars Community High School in 1963. Following graduation, he attended the following schools on a football scholarship, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Trinidad State Junior College-Colorado and Wayne State College-Nebraska. Steve received his Associate of Arts Degree in education from Trinidad State University, his Bachelor of Arts Degree in education from Wayne State and his Master’s Degree in education from Northeast Missouri State University, Kirksville, Missouri.

Steve was a teacher and football coach from 1968-2011, a total of 43 years. He was a longtime head football coach in Iowa. He coached at Northeast Community High School-Goose Lake, Emmetsburg High School and Sioux City North High School. He also had coaching stints at Colorado State University and Independence Community College, in Independence, Kansas. He finished his last 25 years coaching high school football in and around the Houston, Texas, area at Aldine Eisenhower, Galena Park, Spring Westfield, Smithville, Spring and Magnolia. Steve was very proud of being a teacher and coach. Coaching football was truly his passion and he felt so fortunate to be able to do what he loved. A diehard sports fan, Steve especially enjoyed watching the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

Surviving are his wife, Susan; a daughter, Erin (Matt) McLaughlin, of Fort Collins; two sons, Rick (Toni) Gunther, of Palisade, and Scott (Melissa) Gunther, of Fort Collins; a brother, Dave (Jane) Gunther, of Grand Forks, ND; and eight grandchildren, Jordan, Kane, Allison, Jack, Haley, Gaige, Brock and Sawyer; his mother-in-law, Idalou LeRette; sister and brother-in-law Patricia (Dale) Metcalf, all of Dubuque; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two sisters, Judy (Gunther) Mauer and Katy (Gunther) Hummel.

The family would like to thank Dr. Mark Hermann, ARNP Tony Heiar, and nurses, Sandy, Bobye, Sarah Jo and Laura of the Grand River Medical Group-Oncology Department for all the exceptional care and amazing support. Our wonderful hospice team – nurse, Melissa and social worker, Nicole. We are so very grateful and will never forget how comfortable you made Steve feel. Memorials may be made to Jackson County Humane Society or Hospice of Dubuque.

Online condolences for the family.