Stephan Edward Deal

February 1963 - May 20, 2016
Stephan Edward Deal, February 1963 - May 20, 2016

Stephan Edward Deal, a former merchant mariner who lived for 27 years in Montauk, where he worked most recently for Prado Brothers Plumbing and Heating, a division of Marshall & Sons, died at Stony Brook University Hospital on May 20. He was 53, and had complications after undergoing heart surgery.

A jack-of-all-trades, Mr. Deal enjoyed fixing and inventing things, and was a perfectionist in everything he did, his family said. A guitar player and songwriter, he liked to entertain others; he also liked to hunt and fish. Having grown up as an “Army brat,” moving from place to place, he particularly loved to travel.

Mr. Deal, the middle child of three, was born in Fort Bliss, Tex., in February 1963, to Dr. Charles Edward Deal and Velda W. Deal. He graduated from Window Rock High School in Arizona, on a Navajo Indian Reservation, in 1981, and later attended Arizona State University, majoring in political science. He served in the Army National Guard of Arizona and New Mexico as an air defense artillery crewman from 1981 to ’82.

In 1982, Mr. Deal became a Navy machinist, and was sent to the Naval Nuclear Power School. He served on the U.S.S. Vulcan from 1982 to ’83 and on the U.S.S. Iowa from 1983 through ’87. As a member of that ship’s recommissioning crew, he helped complete the major overhaul work needed to get the Iowa back in service ahead of schedule.

While in the Navy, Mr. Deal earned a number of awards, among them pistol sharpshooter and expert rifleman. He was awarded a Sea Service Deployment ribbon, three Battle Efficiency “E” Awards, and three Meritorious Unit commendations, his family said, and earned the Battenberg Cup for the U.S.S. Iowa. He was honorably discharged in 1987 and joined the merchant marine the next year. As a junior engineer, oiler, and seaman, he served on the U.S.S. Mercy for a year.

In August 1989, he took a job as chief engineer at the Montauk Yacht Club. Mr. Deal loved the East End, his family said, and met Patricia Twomey, whom they said was the love of his life, here. The couple had been married more than 13 years when Ms. Twomey died, in 2004.

Mr. Deal was a kid at heart, his family said, and adored his nieces and nephews. He is survived by his parents, who live in San Antonio; a sister, Linda D. Gonzales, also of San Antonio, and a brother, Christopher Deal of Dallas.

Mr. Deal was cremated. His ashes will be placed in a columbarium at the Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery in San Antonio, following a private memorial service with military honors on Friday, June 17.

The family has suggested memorial contributions to the American Heart Association, P.O. Box 417005, Boston 02241, or to a charity of the donor’s choice.