Posted by: Beirne | February 5, 2011

Stephen Vincent Beirne

Stephen Vincent’s spirit was freed from his earthly body on January 31, 2011.  He is now reunited with his dad, Steve, as they rejoice together in the presence of the Lord, Jesus Christ.

Compassionate, courageous, faithful, fearless, gentle, generous, genuine, honest, honorable, loving, loyal, tender, tenacious, wise, witty – words will never capture the essence of Stephen V. Beirne.  Always humble, he endeared us with his warm smile and sense of humor.

He battled Chordoma (a rare spinal cancer) since 2005.  During this time he graduated with honors from CVCA, saw his first novel, November Reign, published, wrote the manuscript for the prequel and began writing his third novel.  Stephen loved to read, especially various translations of the Bible and the writings of C.S. Lewis and JRR Tolkien.  He also enjoyed painting and playing the piano.

So many have touched his life, including those at Livingston Christian Schools, Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, Littlest Heroes, Make-A-Wish, The Learned Owl Bookstore, Harper Collins Publishers and Dreams Are Contagious, as well as Dr. Michael Levien and the compassionate medical team at the Cleveland Clinic.  Stephen loved and was loved by family and friends, near and far, and has left a unique, indelible mark on our lives.

Stephen had an indomitable will, and unshakable faith. His own personal inspiration was Psalm 62:1-2: “My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will never be shaken.”

Donations can be made to the Mephibosheth Fund at Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy,, or the Chordoma Foundation,



  1. I had the pleasure of meeting Stephen and his family. He truely was a courageous person who touched a lot of people during his battle with cancer. His family showed the true meaning of unconditional love. I am so sorry for your loss…I know you must have comfort in knowing he is with his dad and the Lord, cured in heaven!

  2. Mathew 25:21 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant”. Stephen was a great encouragement to me. He sharpened me “iron sharpens iron, So a man sharpens the countenance of his friend” for that I am blessed and thankful. I give thanks to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for by His sacrifice Stephen is now with Him. Revelation 3:21 “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.” I love you Stephen. See you when my exile is over. All glory and praise to Jesus Christ our great High Priest forever.

  3. God bless him. It was a pleasure to know him!!!

  4. Stephen was an inspiration to me. He displayed great grace under fire. It was a privilege to know him.

  5. Stephan what a great young man that I never heard him complain one time. He actully encouage me when I had knee surgery.He was such a blessing to all of us at CVCA.May our Lord fill the voids with His great Love.
    Ed Schofield

  6. What an inspiration this young was and will continue to be to me! Stephen had an unshakable faith, an incredible determination to press on. He truly was my hero. Thank you, Stephen, for your incredible example of a life well lived! You indeed brought glory to your Lord and Savior.

  7. Stephen was one of my dear friends and classmates at Hornung Elementary in Brighton. He was always cheerful and kind to everyone, and even in the most difficult of times he remained one of the most courageous and courteous individuals that I have ever met. God Bless you, Stephen, we are indebted to you for the lessons of generosity and strength that you have given us.

  8. February 07, 2011
    Words cannot convey any sense of the feelings regarding the passing on of this wonderful young man (but I still want to say…boy…since that’s how I’ll always remember Stephen). Stephen accomplished much more than is evident to the eye – during his lifetime. We can only know completely – the depths of it when we get to join him later…
    ~ Susan McDonald, Brighton, Michigan

  9. Please know that Brighton, MI Moms In Touch Moms are praying for you Olga.
    Your Sisters In Christ at Cornerstone~

  10. What a special young man Stephen was. He had an incredible inner strength that one felt just being with him. He faced challenges that most us will never know with courage and determination. Whenever we saw him we were blessed by his kind spirit and handsome smile. We are truly thankful to have known Stephen and to call his family our friends.

  11. Yesterday in my classroom, we had a “publication celebration.” This is a time when each child reads aloud what they have written after revising and editing and polishing. It’s a time to highlight what the author did well and document with fabric markers their accomplishment on a piece of material that will eventually be transformed into a class quilt. This celebration was different from any other. For me, I was taken back some ten ago. That was when I had the special privilege of sharing in Stephen’s life.

    Stephen had signed a similar piece of fabric with all his story titles and their date of “publication” he had written while he was a student in my sixth grade class. From the beginning, I knew in my heart that Stephen was a special young man. Although quiet, he was always thoughtful, insightful, and clever. His deep faith in God had so transformed his life that one time he shared he wanted to become a medical missionary when he grew up. I believed he had the talent for just such a task. Little did I know that our times of class share circles when we read aloud what “lit up our writing for the week,” would become such precious memories for me. Personally, I highly anticipated what I would hear each week from Stephen’s writing journal. He often produced something funny, clever, or reflective. At other times, he kept all of us in suspense as the tale would be a continued edition for the next week. One time in particular, I recall him developing his own setting and plot line using a variety of current day cartoon characters. What resulted was a hilarious, laugh-out-loud short story.

    I shared with my students the writing dreams I cherished; that someday I wanted to write a book. I am so thankful to those who helped Stephen accomplish his writing goals. At the time he was sixth grade, I was unaware of this desire. Perhaps it grew as he wrote more in the coming years. Nevertheless, I always knew that whatever Stephen put his hand to, he would accomplish. He did. He worked diligently to write his book November Reign. I was so proud of his tenacious efforts in spite of having many days where he did not feel well. Indeed, his writing talent far exeeded his former teacher.

    When the Bierne family moved to Ohio, they gave me a beautiful stained glass lighthouse. When I learned that Stephen was diagnosed with cancer it became a remembrance for me to always keep him in my prayers. Today, its light still shines as it sits in my kitchen, now in remembrance of his impact on my life. It will always be lit in my home to remind me that all our days are precious. Daily, I recall a precious boy who changed my life by observing his gentle spirit, his courageous battle, and his trust in God in spite of circumstances. Stephen, your name was written in the Book of Life in the heavenlies; so is mine. You got home first, but I’ll see you there soon. In the meantime, I will keep you forever in a special place in my heart.

    Lovingly submitted: Katherine Chapman

  12. […] just read this beautiful post on Stephen’s site by his sixth grade teacher Katherine Chapman to whom the book is dedicated, and I had to post it […]

  13. as i search for words, i struggle, to find any that can convey my heart and love for Stephen. or for the loss that is felt by his family and those that had the privilege of knowing him. Stephen, much like his dad was “the life of the party without being the center of attention”. You might wonder why i say that. its really quite simply. Steve and Stephen oozed LIFE, with a humble, strength. Much as i imagine our Lord and Savior did. in a room full of people they were quiet but yet you couldn’t help but be drawn to them. as some of you may know Stephen wanted to be a missionary. and i have to say that i believe that he was. His life and story have touched more lives than we will ever know this side of heaven. i am still encouraged and strengthened by the faith and courage displayed in Steve and Stephen’s lives. and i know that all those that hear their story as well as those that have been a part of it or touched by it in some way, will find strength, faith, and yes even the love needed to cary on and not give up. I have been more than blessed to know them both. Steve and Stephen you are Loved and missed but never forgotten. Your strength and your faith lives on.

    Olga, Gregg, Katie and Sarah we love you
    The Blank”s

  14. Stephen was a gift to Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, a wonderful example and an inspiration to us of living faith, courage, persistence, creativity and fun. His tenacity in facing each day without complaining was remarkable.

    Thank you for sharing him with us, Olga.
    God bless you and the family with His steadfast love as you continue on your own pilgrimage. May He lead you and sustain you in “paths of righteousness for His name sake.

    Roger Putnam

  15. I am overcome with emotion reading the different postings. I first came to know the Beirne family through my church family in Brighton. Then Stephen and my daughter were classmates with Miss Chapman in upper elementary at Livingston Christian School. As Susan mentioned, I too remember Stephen mostly as a young boy and teenager. He had a quiet spirit and a good sense of humor. He showed great faith and peace as he traveled his journey. I was excited to read November Reign, I loved it; definitely a page turner.

    “You are the children of the Lord your God…Of all the peoples on the face of the earth, the Lord has chosen you to be his treasured possession.” Deuteronomy 14:1-2

    My love and Gods peace to Greg, Katie, Sarah and my dear Olga!

  16. Olga,
    We met at the Akron Transit station when pictures of Stephen and other young dreamers were put on the buses. Stephen was a true dreamer and an inspirtation to everyone whose life he touched. I was deeply saddened when I read Sunday’s newspaper. Early Monday morning, minutes after I left home , I stopped at a red light. A bus rolled up right next to me and there was Stephen’s smiling face looking in at me. He will continues to live on in the hearts of so many people.

    My love and prayers go out to you and your family.
    Rose Wilcher

  17. Stephen, you are so greatly missed and no words can ever express the loss that is felt by your absence.
    Your life has touched so many more than you even knew or realized.
    Olga, my dear, precious friend, I will weep when you weep and laugh when you laugh and listen until you can talk no more.
    We love you and Greg and Katie and Sarah!
    Donalie & Frank

  18. One of the many things that I admired about Stephen is that he was an awesome big brother. Before the Beirne’s move to Ohio, my daughter Rachel and Sarah were the best of friends. One of Rachel’s favorite things to do was spending time at the Beirne’s. Most kids Stephen’s age would have been annoyed with the idea of hanging out with their kid sister, let alone her friend. But that was not Stephen. With little coaxing, Stephen lent his creative talents and humor to creating, directing and participating in the many off-off broadway plays that took place in the Beirne’s basement. To this day, Rachel laughes at the fun times they had and those memories remain some of the best of her grade school years.

    Thru the years and over the distance, our admiration for this young man who showed us all how to live out what we believe, has grown beyond what words can express. I can think of no one more deserving of the greeting that I know Stephen recieved in heaven, “Well done my good and faithful servent.”

    We love you Olga, Greg, Katie and Sarah.
    The Papendick Family

  19. What an enjoyable student Stephen was in my class before his illness. As he struggled in the next years, his courage and warm smile never seemed to waiver. What a blessing to receive a copy of his book from him! It was so well-written and creative. May our precious Lord bring each of you comfort and peace as you miss him in the days, months and years ahead. To know that he is with his Savior, brings assurance that we will meet again. God bless you, With love

  20. To the entire Beirne family,

    It was always such a pleasure taking care of Stephen and getting to know all of you in the process. I saw his book on my bookshelf tonight, which led to me finding this blog. I am so terribly sorry for your losses, of both Stephen and his dad. Stephen was a wonderful person, and touched so many lives. I know he is smiling down on everyone. I will never forget him. I’ll be saying a special prayer for Stephen and for all of you tonight. Take care and God bless.

    Amanda Morningstar

  21. It was a pleasure taking care of Stephen,and getting to know his family. Stephen you will forever be missed and in my heart. I will remember all the times we spent together. Olga,Gregg,Katie,Sarah i LOVE U ALL AND AS ME AND STEPHEN USE TO SAY TO EACH OTHER I WILL SEE YOU LATER. GOD BLESS YOU ALL.

  22. Dear Beirne Family,

    I am so very sad to learn of Stephen’s passing, (and his father before him.) So many months have passed since the time we shared in Brighton and I know many of the days have been difficult for all of you, especially you, Olga. May you find strength and peace in each other’s love.

    God bless you,
    Cynthia Lear, (Al Lear, A.J. Lear and Leann Lear)

  23. Hello Olga and Family,

    I saw Stephan’s obit in the Daily Press & Argus this morning and was saddened to hear of his passing (and of his father before him). I remember you and your family from Howell Nazarene Christian School. Please know you and your family are in my prayers.

    Cynthia Grochowski
    Howell, Michigan

  24. Dear Beirne family,

    I heard the news today and I am deeply saddened for your loss. I used to live down the street in Brighton and I would come over to play with Katie. I am so sorry to hear this news. I have a lot of fond memories of playing at your house and I remember at Katie’s birthday party when Greg and Stephen put on a magic show for us. They had put together elaborate costumes and tricks and everything. I also remember how we were the coolest kids on the block because my best friend’s name was Katie B, and Steven’s best friend’s name was Stephen B. We would always tell all our friends how cool it was that our best friends had the same names as us. I hope that you all are doing okay and I’m sending my thoughts and prayers your way.

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