Darlene and Steve were suddenly and tragically taken from us on Wednesday, Sept. 8, in a motorcycle accident that was no fault of their own. They loved riding with one another and taking in all the beauty Wyoming is. In an instant, they were torn from the presence of those who loved them, leaving behind a legacy of strength, courage and endless love. Countless precious memories flow with them to heaven, and the touch of their hands will be sorely missed. Their steadfast faith in God welcomes them into His arms.
Darlene was born and raised in Evanston. She was one of four siblings and the third daughter of Warren and Edith Barnes. Darlene graduated from the University of Utah, attaining her teaching degree and later her master’s degree from UNLV. She taught school for more than 40 years in Utah, Nevada and Wyoming. Two of these positions were on Native American Reservations.
Darlene was an active member of Eastern Star for many years, and recently served as Associate Matron of Eastern Star, Evanston Chapter Naomi 13. She was also a member of Daughters of Utah Pioneers. Darlene was the most loving, gracious, and caring daughter, sister, aunt, wife and friend. The gift of her vibrancy and love overflowed to us, bringing happiness and sunshine to our lives. Darlene was always willing to help others in as many ways as she could, and all were greeted with a warm hello and a smile.
Steve was born and raised in Riverton. He was one of three siblings, and the son of Chuck and Shirley Powell. Steve was a skilled craftsman in welding and later in construction. Anything Steve touched was done with attention to detail and perfection. He took tremendous pride in everything he did. When he was young, his parents would sometimes come home to find he had taken apart a small appliance so he could reassemble and learn from it.
Steve had a lifelong love of motorcycles which began in his teen years. The passion he felt eventually led to racing Harley Davidson motorcycles professionally throughout the United States. Steve had the one and only million-dollar smile that lit up any room or conversation. His sense of humor was contagious and irresistible, and before you even knew it, you were just as happy, and laughing just as hard as Steve. He had a great appreciation of nature and enjoyed all the beauty it had to offer. Steve shared his love and generous spirit with family.
Steve and Darlene were married in Lake Tahoe, Nevada, on June 29, 1974. Even before their marriage, they were the perfect example of love and devotion, forming a lifelong bond. Steve and Darlene lived in Utah, Nevada and Wyoming. Their lives were full of adventure and excitement, which they readily shared with others. They also had a great fondness for animals, and especially loved taking trips in the spring to see how many baby animals they could find.
Following Darlene’s retirement in Riverton, Wyoming, they moved to their dream home in Evanston. It was important to them that their choice of home would serve as a warm and welcoming gathering place for family. They provided frequent gatherings that prioritized family. Steve and Darlene fostered the growth and enrichment of our deep connection to one another, unknowingly giving us the strength and unity that we will continue to share with others, which is so needed now. There is no doubt Steve and Darlene know the love that their family has for them, and there is no doubt how much they love each and every one of us.
Steve is survived by his sister, Sue Powell, and her sons and grandchildren: Travis Smith, Kevin Smith (Megan), Caden Mitchell, Aleila and Judah Smith; his brother, Carey Powell (Judy) and their children and grandchildren: Jared Powell (Angie), Ethan and Shawn Curtin and Korvyn Powell; Caralee Jones (Mike), Jade Larsen, Ava Pieczonka, and Wyatt Jones; Weston and Garrett Powell. He is also survived by his aunt, Gail Carter; and multiple cousins.
Steve was preceded in death by his parents, grandparents, uncles and all but one aunt.
Darlene is survived by her sisters, Joyce Martines and Barbara Barnes; her brother, Tom Barnes (Adrienne); nieces and nephews, Ashanah Barnes, Amber Martines, Lisa Lokken (Greg), Madison and Chase Lokken, Art Martines (Amy), Morganne Martines-Bennett, McKenzie, Miranda and Saylor Martines, Tony Martines (Heather) and Carson Martines and Caryn Martines; and cousins, Dave and Wes Moon.
Darlene was preceded in death by her parents.
Funeral services will be a small gathering for family and close friends at 1 p.m. on Friday, Sept 17, at the LDS 4th Ward church, 201 Sage St., Evanston. All are welcome at graveside services at 2:30 p.m. at the Evanston City Cemetery.