Steven Atkinson

Published 6:59 pm Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Healed and whole and ready to worship our Savior with his Daddy, Grandpa At, and Grandma Ingle, Steven Gaither Atkinson, 61 of Appomattox, shed his tired, sick body on Sunday, Feb. 6, and stepped into eternity. Steve was born on Oct. 11, 1960 to Margaret Ingle Atkinson and the late Harmon Gaither Atkinson.

Steve is survived by his wife of 29 years, Susan and children, Patrick Gaither Atkinson (fiancé, Kami Sprinkle) and Margaret Ann Atkinson. In addition to his mother, he will be greatly missed by his brother, Greg Atkinson of Cumberland; sister, Gayle Kukorlo (Anthony) of Henrico; nephew, Robert Atkinson; niece, Laura Atkinson and numerous great nieces and nephews, along with a loving extended family. He will be especially missed by his four-legged best friend, Jack.

Steve grew up in Cumberland and attended the public schools, where he was a member of the football and baseball teams, as well as the Cumberland High theatre. During high school he began working at his family’s business, Cumberland Auto. He was an EMT of the Cumberland Volunteer Rescue Squad, a member of the Cumberland Fire Department and was instrumental in starting youth league football in Cumberland County, where he coached both football and baseball. Steve loved helping others and passing down what he had learned from his mentors. By trade, Steve was a salesman. In his lifetime, he sold everything from car and heavy-duty truck parts to insurance to advertisements for the Times Virginian. He was passionate about coaching and helping others. He coached youth league baseball and football in Cumberland and Appomattox for over 20 years and was a volunteer EMT for almost as long. He planted the EMS bug in his wife and children who continue to work and volunteer in that field today. But, above all, Steve was most invested in his family. He believed that family came first in everything, and nothing gave him more pleasure than supporting his children in their endeavors. He traveled to the ends of the state to watch Patrick play football and even farther watching his Maggie Ann compete in Marching Band. His family was his reason for living.

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Steve had many admirable qualities and a few that would drive you nuts. He was a man of integrity and trustworthiness. If he told you he would do something, he did it. He wouldn’t sell you an inferior part just to make a commission and his customers appreciated his honesty. He believed in telling the truth, even if it was hard. And, most importantly, he believed in loving and supporting his family. He also believed that “15 minutes early is on time, and on time is late,” and insisted that “beer and brownies DO go together” but we loved him anyway!

We would be amiss if we neglected to thank the nurses and doctors in the STICU at LGH. These “Angels in Scrubs” cared for him with such compassion and, when recovery was no longer possible, they shifted their focus to attending to his family, making sure our last days and moments with Steve were spent the way we wanted and he was able to pass peacefully with his wife holding his hand.

Flowers? Those weren’t his thing. Instead, the family suggests that you donate to the charity of your choice in Steve’s honor. Some of his favorites included: Cumberland Fire Department, Appomattox Rescue Squad, Cumberland Youth Sports, Appomattox Youth Sports, Appomattox Athletic Boosters, Appomattox Band Boosters, St Jude’s Children’s Hospital, Wounded Warriors or your home church.

The family will receive visitors at Puckett Funeral Home in Farmville on Wednesday, Feb. 9, from 6 to 8 p.m., and a graveside service will be conducted at Center Presbyterian Church Cemetery, Cumberland, on Thursday, Feb. 10 at 11 a.m. The family will also receive friends at his home in Appomattox and his mother’s home in Cumberland.

To use his favorite phrase, “The whole thing in a nutshell is…” he loved and was loved and will be missed terribly by his friends and family. Until we meet him again in Heaven, hug your people and love one another. That’s why we’re here, anyway. Puckett Funeral Home is serving the family.