Rev. Stephen “Steve” R. Parke, 64, Pueblo West, Colo., died Friday, May 25, 2018, in Colorado Springs after a brief illness.
He was born Dec. 7, 1953, in WaKeeney to Robert and Barbara (Nemechek) Parke. He was a 1972 graduate of Trego Community High School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Rockhurst College and a Masters of Divinity from Catholic Theological Union in Chicago.
He was ordained a Catholic priest in 1982 and served as Associate Pastor at St. Mary Catholic Church in Garden City for two years. The remainder of his professional career was spent ministering to the outcast. He was a substance abuse counselor, prison chaplain and mental health chaplain, all in Colorado. He also was a licensed minister with the United Church of Christ.
He was a member of Pueblo’s Faith Leaders in Action, Together Colorado, Pueblo Arts Alliance and Pueblo Songwriters and Musicians Association. He was a published musician and songwriter. He was a board member for the Bukovina Society of America and Pueblo German American Club. He had a deep interest in genealogy, especially his family’s Irish, Czech and Bukovina-German roots.
Survivors include his mother, WaKeeney; three brothers, William and wife, Annette, Oakley, Patrick, Hays, and Brian and wife, Beth, Colorado Springs; and a sister, Margaret Schmitt and husband, Brad, WaKeeney.
He was preceded in death by his father; two sisters, Jean Marie and Gemma; and his grandparents, Peter and Rose Parke and Steve and Barbara Nemechek.
Services will be at 11a.m. Wednesday at Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church, Pueblo, Colo; inurnment will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday in WaKeeney City Cemetery.
Memorials are suggested to The Gift Foundation of Pueblo to support music education and appreciation in care of Angelus Chapel Mortuaries, Pueblo.