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In Memory Of
Stephen John Backes
1960 2024

Stephen John Backes

February 24, 1960 — April 4, 2024

Stephen John Backes, age 64, of Green Bay, passed away on April 4, 2024 surrounded by his family after his heroic 4 year battle with cancer.

He was born on February 24, 1960 to Cyril "Zeke" and Mary Lou (Rebman) Backes in Madison, Wisconsin. He was raised in a home built on a strong foundation of family, love, and faith.

Steve graduated from Preble High School in 1978 where he lettered in Cross Country. In 1981, he earned his Associates Degree in Land Surveying from Nicolet College, in Rhinelander, WI. After graduation, he built a life in Eagle River and lived there for 30 years, where he initiated his 40 year career in the Beverage Service Industry until he retired in January of 2020. He was affectionately known throughout the Northwoods as "Steve the Pepsi Guy". He prioritized his time with his daughters, frequently bringing them along on service calls and picking them up every morning to take them to school.

Steve was gifted with the mind of a mechanical engineer: in 1976 he helped build the family cottage; he customized his homes in Eagle River, Wausau, and Green Bay; was a master craftsman with furniture; and was extremely generous with his time and talents for friends and family. Some of Steve's favorite projects were crafting toy boxes for his grandkids. He had a love for working on cars and rebuilt a '69 Austin Healy which made numerous trips to his girls' favorite ice cream shops. His final project was the creation of a beautiful urn for himself.

In the fall of 2008, with the help of eHarmony, Steve and Deb Heinkel met and fell in love. They were united in marriage on March 14, 2011 in Las Vegas. They made their home in Wausau for 10 years, before the couple returned to Green Bay in 2020.

Steve is survived by his loving spouse and life partner, Deb; his daughters: Michelle (Josh) Beatty, and Stephanie (Brandon Duerst) Backes, and their mother Debbie Beenken. His wife Deb's children: Chelsie, Teale, and Brett Bellisle; her sisters: Sharon (Mike) Seidel and Nancy Whitman. He was Papa to 5 beautiful grandchildren: Julia, Andrew and Delainey Beatty, Vida Duerst and Armani Bellisle. His sisters: Nancy (Greg) Thome, Cyndi (Dr. David) Olsen, Mary (Pete) Utic, and nieces, nephews, cousins and numerous friends.

He was preceded in death by his father, Zeke, mother, Mary Lou, sister-in-law, Kay (Heinkel) Cook and brother-in-law Wayne Whitman.

Visitation will be held on Saturday, April 13, 2024, at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church (2160 Packerland Dr, Green Bay) from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. Following the visitation, a Celebration of Life will be held at 12:00 pm with Pastor John Jordan officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are encouraged to be given to the American Lung Association, see https://www.lung.org/ to make a donation.

The family would also like to extend a special thank you to Dr. Mortara and staff at Bellin Health Cancer Team, as well as the fourth floor Med/Surg Staff, including Dr. Collin Bowman, at Bellin Hospital who supported Steve through his final days.

He was an avid blood donor, and as his final act of generosity, Steve donated his corneas through the Lions Eye Bank of Wisconsin.

To share a memory of Stephen or leave a special message for his family, please click the Share Memories button above.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Stephen John Backes, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, April 13, 2024

10:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church

2160 Packerland Drive, Green Bay, WI 54304

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Service

Saturday, April 13, 2024

Starts at 12:00 pm (Central time)

Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church

2160 Packerland Drive, Green Bay, WI 54304

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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