Steven Edward Syms, longtime Pullman resident, passed away Sunday, Sept. 8, 2019, at his Pullman home. He was 66. A celebration of life gathering will be held at a later date.

Steven was born in Pullman on Aug. 12, 1953, the oldest of three children, to Edward and Annabelle Simon Syms. He grew up in Pullman and graduated from high school there in 1971. Steve played the trumpet in the high school band. He married Melody Johnson in Pullman and they soon moved to Chewelah, Wash. Steve and Melody had two children, Michael and Tina. Their marriage ended in divorce and Steve moved back to Pullman in 1980 and worked at the body shop for his dad.

After his brother took over the shop, Steve worked for Brian’s Body Shop for several years using his artistic skills in the body and fender repair. He operated S & B Towing for many years and was well known throughout the community. He met Mary Winskie in Chewelah in 1989, and they married in Coeur d’Alene on Jan. 26, 1991. Mary had two daughters, Melissa and Sarah, and both were loved as Steve’s own.

The family loved to go camping, especially to Laird Park. They enjoyed ski trips to 49 Degrees North, riding 4-wheelers and spending time outdoors. Steve loved fishing, taking trips in his RV with Mary, or taking flight in an ultra-light aircraft. He would trap-shoot with friends in Colton, visit over coffee five days per week at Zeppoz, and wave to nearly everyone on the street, as he knew them all.

He worked for five years at Washington State University as a heavy equipment operator before retiring in 2014. He was a talented craftsman and made knives that he often donated for auctions. He was an excellent woodworker and made many pieces of furniture and cabinetry using his skills. Steve and Mary bought their dream home between Pullman and Moscow just over a year ago.

He will be missed by so many in the community; but especially by his wife, Mary, at their home; four children, Michael Syms, of Texas, Tina (Jarred) Roy, of Kooskia, Melissa (Jeff) Schoenbachler, of Moscow, and Sarah (Blake) Bull, of Genesee; his 11 grandchildren of whom he was so proud; Sarah, Conner, Taylor, Casey, Brayden, Hailie, Tristan, Evan, Brandi, Brenna and Nicholas; by his mother, Annabelle Syms, of Pullman, his brother, Brian (Annette) Syms, of Pullman, and by his sister, Annalee Syms, of Pullman. He was preceded in death by his father, Edward “Mike” Syms.

The family suggests memorial gifts be made to a cancer charity of choice. Online guest book is at

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