Steve Theis passed away at home, where he wanted to be, on Friday January 8, after a long and courageous battle with cancer. He was 77.
Steve was born in Barberton, Ohio on September 24, 1943, to Francis Theis and Helen Jean Wickizer Theis. He graduated from Mt. Lebanon High School in Pennsylvania where he played baseball and basketball. He went to Wabash College in Crawfordsville Indiana. He always said, he went to Wabash because they allowed dogs in their classrooms. From there Steve attended the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and graduated in 1969. He did an internship and general surgery residency at Indiana University Medical Center. Steve then went on to do his residency and fellowship in orthopedic surgery at UPMC, where he was chief resident.
Steve was a major in the USAF. He was chief of orthopedic surgery at Elgin Air Force Base Regional Hospital. He received the Air Force Commendation Medal in 1976 for his "excellent medical knowledge of orthopedics and managerial skills along with his high morals and professionalism."
In 1976, after leaving the Air Force, Steve began practicing orthopedics in Pittsburgh and Washington, Pa. He ultimately practiced in Washington and Canonsburg Pa. He spent most of his professional career in solo practice. Several years before retirement he joined Advanced Orthopaedics and Rehab. He enjoyed these last few years of his profession so much due to the great group of doctors, nurses and staff he worked with. Steve retired in January of 2013.
In 2001 Steve married the former Raine Patton, "the love of his life." In February 2013, after he retired, they moved to The Landings in Savannah, Ga. They loved the life they shared there. In 2014 Steve was diagnosed with his second occurrence of head and neck cancer. At that time, he had extensive surgery that left him unable to speak or eat for the rest of his life. This is something that would have destroyed the spirit of a normal person, but Steve set forth to live the best life he could, never complaining and always upbeat and an inspiration to all who knew him.
Throughout his life Steve enjoyed bird hunting and fly fishing. He collected books on the sports he so enjoyed. Steve loved wine and always believed it needed to be enjoyed "in a proper glass". He was also known to drink a Jack Daniel's, the favorite drink of the Theis family. He liked "good ice" and hated "bad bread." One of Steve's biggest passions was college basketball. His favorite team were the Duke Blue Devils. Steve loved woodworking, and after his surgery it provided many hours of relaxing enjoyment for him, and many beautiful pieces of furniture for Raine. He enjoyed photography. The Landings provided beautiful scenery and gorgeous wildlife and birds as his subjects. Even though Steve could no longer eat, he enjoyed cooking and entertaining. Steve and Raine loved hosting their Midpoint Halloween party every year. Steve loved to play bridge. He learned the game in college but took refresher classes when Raine wanted to learn to play. He joined a poker group with a great group of friends. Steve and Raine belonged to a Euchre group with seven other couples that would play every month. Regardless of his disabilities, Steve had a full and active life, attending monthly trivia games and many dances and social gatherings.
Steve is predeceased by his parents, Fran and Helen Jean Theis. He is survived by his wife Raine and his three daughters, Kimberly (Joseph) Sgroi, of Portland OR. Melissa McVeigh (Jeffrey) of Portland OR, Allison (Brian) Dolan of Pittsburgh PA and two stepchildren, Betsy (Manuel) Dominguez of Savannah, Ga. And Blake (Allysum) Chunko of Pueblo, Co. He is granddad to fifteen "wonderful" grandchildren. Lydia McVeigh, Megan McVeigh, Matthew Sgroi, Caroline Sgroi, Anna Catherine Sgroi, William Sgroi, Anne Dolan, John Dolan, Mary Grace Dolan, Peter Dolan, Katherine Dolan, Luke Dolan, Clara Dolan, Jordi Dominguez and Axel Dominguez. He is also survived by his siblings, Margaret Atkinson, Philip (Linda) Theis, Elizabeth McNulty, and Catherine Sutula, and many nieces and nephews. He also leaves behind his fur babies, Sophie, Macie Grace, and Bella, who miss him terribly.
Because of COVID and at his request, there will be no funeral. A memorial service will be held at a safer time. Donations can be made to The Humane Society For Greater Savannah. 7215 Sallie Mood Dr. Savannah, Ga. 31406.
Please sign our online guestbook at www.foxandweeks.com.
I am so very sorry for your loss. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
- Falecia Beverley, Pooler, GA
Sincere condolences and prayers for your family.
- Chris Heidt, Savannah, Ga
We are so sorry for your loss. We continue to pray for you all.
- Samantha and Jim Dolan, Jr. , Bozeman, MT
Raine, I am so sorry for your loss. Steve was such a good man and the two of you were meant for each other. Know you are in my thoughts and prayers. Hugs Laynee
- Laynee Zipko, Washington, Pa
Raine, I’m so sorry for your loss. Steve was a most fortunate man to have you by his side throughout his heartbreaking cancer journey. I hope the love family and friends bestow on you brings you comfort during this difficult time. I will keep you in my prayers.
- Judy Case, Savannah, GA
We will always miss you Steve but feel like you are with us in spirit. Thank you for always being curious about my adventures and medical career. Raine you completed Steve. I’m so happy he brought you, Betsy’s & Blake into our life.
- Suzanne Atkinson & Michael a row , Pittsburgh , PA
My condolences to Steve’s loved ones. As part of Steve’s extended family, I heard stories told of him from my cousins, father, uncle and grandparents. They were usually centered on Steve’s great sense of humor, his kindness or intelligence. I never heard an unkind word spoken about Steve. I am saddened to hear of Steve’s passing.
- Kristi Atkinson Wescott , Durham, NC
Raine, Chris and I so enjoyed seeing you at Tom Lyons house in Savannah. Knowing Steve is in a better place we pray you will find peace knowing he had many people who loved and respected him. Best wishes to you Bill and Chris sickels
- Sickels, Savannah, Ga
My condolences to the family. Dr. Theis took care of me and my knees and he treated me with kindness and respect. He was the best at his work.
- Terry Craig, Canonsburg, PA
I first met Dr. Theis as a patient, some 16 years ago. He performed two knee replacements for me. He always listened to the patient and was sincerely interested in helping. I wish his family to be comforted by your pleasant memories of him.
- Joseph Progar, Canonsburg, PA
I worked with Dr Theis for many years at Washington Hospital. What a great man he was! He will be missed, Raine.
- Kathy Neal, Canonsburg , Pa
What an amazing man and an able bridge player. May his memory be for a blessing, My prayers and love to your whole family.
- Kathleen Berlin, Savannah, GA
Dear Mrs. Theis, please accept my condolences for Dr. Theis. I was fortunate to know him as an excellent surgeon for me and my late husband. Revelation 21:4-7 has always given me great comfort as I pray for you and your family. May your precious husband rest in heavenly peace.
- Patricia Lyle, Washington, Pennsylvania
Raine and the entire Theis Family Sincere condolences. Was so saddened to hear this news. Steve was one of the most professional ,excellent and caring orthopedic physicians. His perseverance during his cancer journey was an example of this wonderful man. Hugs and prayers during this difficult time.
- Cindy and Craig Fox, Washington , PA
My thoughts and prayers are with the family and his friends
- Melinda poland, Washington , Pa
Many years ago, my elderly mother was having some difficulty with her hand, and I made an appointment with Dr. Theis. Long story short, he was able to help her regain full function again. She talked about him often for the rest of her life. He not only solved her orthopedic problem, he treated her with such respect. People remember. My deepest sympathy to his family and friends.
- Linda Porter, BROWNSVILLE, Pennsylvania
Dear Raine and family, I am so sorry to hear of Dr. Theis’s passing. He was the most kind, compassionate and excellent physician. I am so glad that you found each other and lived a full life together. A life cut short must be difficult to bear. My heart goes out to you. With deepest sympathy Bernice Pagano
- Bernice Malinak Pagano, Washington , Pa
My deepest sympathy to the family. I have known Dr. Theis since 1978 when I first worked with him in the outpatient dept at washington hospital. I continued to have contact with him as I worked in out patient surgical dept. He was a great surgeon .and took time to talk with his patients and their families. I told him many many times I just wished everyone was as organized and thorough as he was. Even though I have not seen him for several years I will miss him. Rest in peace, Dr. Theis
- Beverly Mcvay, Washington , PA
My deepest sympathies and condolences to DR Theis ‘s family - he cared for my daughter many many years ago Neither of us have forgotten his kindness and wonderful bedside manor Well done kind sir !! May he Rest In Peace with god Prayers to his family and spouse
- Janelle Steffan, CAnonsburg , PA
Thoughts, strength and prayers to your family. What a great surgeon and kind , caring man.
- Patty Briggs, Taylorstown , PA
He was a dear friend and a paradigm for courage and resilience in his last years.
- Don Hands, Savannah , GA
My condolences to Dr. Theis's family. I had the privilege of working with him on the Orthopedic Unit at The Washington Hospital for many years. He expected nothing less than our best care for his patients, and we made sure that they received it.
- Kathy Meyer, Charleroi, PA
I really appreciate reading these kind notes left in remembrance of my Dad. His legacy lives on in his family, friends, and patients...
- Kimberly Theis Sgroi, Portland , Oregon
I am so sorry for your loss. Dr Theis was so respected for his highly respected by my mother in law Accious Yilit and myself. My he Rest In Peace
- Joni Yilit , Avella , Pa
Raine and family, So sorry for your loss. Steve and I were frat brothers and studied pre-med together. I had tremendous respect for his intellect and his infectious sense of humor. He was a talented basketball player as well! Regretfully, I last visited with him at our 25th class reunion. RIP Steve! Donald C. Buehner, M.D.
- Donald Buehner, Lakewood Ranch, Fl
I am so very sorry for your loss of such a wonderful Dr. He was always so kind and his patients loved him. He was highly respected by all who lives he touched. Prayers for his family during this difficult time.
- Michele Leppert, Washington , Pa
I'd like to offer my condolences to the family and friends of Steve Theis. My favorite memory of my ex brother-in-law was his classic Jaguar XKE convertible that he restored and drove with pride. He loved that car and looked good driving that beautiful sable Jaguar. Rest in peace Steve.
- Michelle Raymond, Pompano Beach, FL
Raine, I am so sorry that we have lost our good friend Steve. I often referred to him as "my hero" for all that he endured with such grace. He is missed. Bill
- William Donohue, Savannah, Georgia
Dr. Theis was my surgeon in 3 occasions 2 knee replacements and another surgery that had to be preformed before a replacement on my right knee. He found the procedure to be very interesting and had just been to a seminar on the surgery prior to my appointment. He was always very kind to me and I trusted him and his knowledge. Although there was a long time span between my surgeries, I had asked him to “please not retire before my next replacement took place”. I was so glad that happened. I have read many obituaries in my time, but I was never moved to tears as I was when I read his. May the Grace of God be with you and the family at this time of sorrow.
- Mary Lennox, Washington , PA
Raine and family. I am so sorry for your loss. Steve was a fraternity brother at Wabash College. All of us knew back then that he would have a great life. We could recognize then that he was a special man. At Wabash, we had a pithy way of summarizing the special qualities of a person: He was some Little Giant.
- Patrick Becherer, Oakland, CA
Raine, I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
- Nancy Rathi, Washington, Pa
My deepest sympathy and prayers to the family. Dr Theis treated my parents for many years. He always went above and beyond to care for them and treated them with so much compassion and kindness. I will forever be grateful and will always be in My prayers.
- Regina Zacour , Washington , Pa
Such a beautiful spirit will never be forgotten. Steve lived a wonderful life, so terribly sad to have lost him too early. I would like to add that while he enjoyed good ice in his Jack Daniels he also liked to have it stirred occasionally by certain kitty paws❤️
- Cheryl, Bunner, Pa
How sad I was to hear of “Stevie’s” passing. I was the only one who called him that. He got the biggest kick out of it too. I met him in my days at the ER and then got to work with him in the OR all at Washington Hospital. He was a very respected man and Doctor. He was a gentleman of the finest. He will be so missed by all those that had the pleasure of knowing him. Raine and family, please know that so many share in your sadness and your love for such a wonderful man. I hope that brings you comfort. He has left quite a legacy for us. Rest In Peace Stevie.
- Loretta J Antanovich, Crystal River, Florida
So sorry to hear about Steve's death. He was the consummate professional! I was privileged to work with him for 35+ years, and observe the excellent care that he rendered.
- james d. pareso,M.D., washington, PA
We are so very sorry for your loss. We extend our deepest sympathy in your sorrow. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
- Don and Beth Mohr, West Finley, PA
I worked as a nurse for 44 years, 25 years of which was at Washington Hospital. This is where I worked with Dr. Theis. He was so kind, compassionate, caring and had a wonderful bedside manner; a masterful surgeon. We used to call him the king and he would just smile. This town was sad when he was no longer available. My heart is broken to think of what he endured these past years. However, I was not surprised to hear how he soldiered on with that wonderful spirit. Upbeat, soft spoken, a positive presence. I'm sure he will be richly rewarded for all he imparted to others while on his earthly path. Your entire family has my heartfelt condolences and I pray for you to find peace. The world was surely a better place when he was here. Kindest regards, Gerry Piatt MA BS RN
- Gerry L Piatt, WASHINGTON, PA
It was an honor to work with and learn from such a gentle, passionate and skilled physician. My deepest sympathy to Raine and family. May you feel the warmth of Gods embrace.
- Alice Sacco Murphy, Washington, Pa
Raine, You have my very deepest sympathy ! My prayers are with you and your family. Love, June
- Jun Basil, Pittsburgh, PA
Services under the direction of:
Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel