Cherry: 'Biggy' tended our office, lifted our spirits
It wasn't until after Steve died last week that I learned so much about the man who kept our offices tidy and brought a cheerful outlook to sometimes long days.
In fact, I didn't know Steve's last name until reading his obituary.
Steven Bilsky. He was 60 and would've turned 61 next month.
He was a member of Sacred Heart Church in Chester, W.Va.; was a Mason, Shriner and member of Knights of Columbus, his obituary read. Those who knew him well apparently called him “Biggy.”
I knew none of that about Steve. To me and to our Sewickley Herald staff, he was a friendly guy, with a grandfather-like persona — reminded me a lot of how I imagined Fred Rogers to be in person.
What I did know about Steve was how proud of his kids he was, that he enjoyed following football and baseball teams of South Side High School in Beaver County, and — in the truest sense of the word — I knew he was a very kind gentleman.
And over the last year or two I learned he wasn't a fan of the Ambridge-Aliquippa Bridge closure because it caused delays across the Sewickley Bridge, which he used often. He was glad when that bridge finally re-opened.
He kept clean and functioning the building the Herald calls home, and did handy work for many others in the area, he had said.
Steve's nickname seems fitting for a man who had such a big heart to practically perfect strangers. When we moved into the building in 2011, I mentioned I had considered getting a desk lamp.
The next day, one showed up already plugged in.
But several weeks back, we received word he had been in the hospital. On the day he was discharged, he stopped in to — of all things — empty our trash cans, having felt guilty for them overflowing. I told him not to worry, that we could empty them. But he was insistent that he do it.
He stopped making regular afternoon/early evening visits. The last time I saw Steve was late one evening a few weeks ago.
We chatted for a bit and said goodbye.
Steve made a positive impact on many more people than those of us at the Herald, and I get the feeling he wanted it kept that way.
Bobby Cherry is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-324-1408 or email@example.com.
Add Bobby Cherry to your Google+ circles.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.