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Joseph "Steve" Carroll '68 October 13, 2022 3:28 PM updated: October 13, 2022 3:39 PM

Joseph Stephen Carroll
April 20, 1938 - May 19, 2022

Steve Carroll never stayed a stranger for long. His friendliness, quick wit, breadth of knowledge, and disarming grin endeared him to friends, family and individuals he just met. Steve's uncanny talent to remember people's names and his genuine interest in their lives charmed neighbors, impressed owners of the businesses he patronized, and won over restaurant servers. Steve's rich and colorful life ended on May 19, 2022 due to congestive heart failure.

Joseph Stephen Carroll was born on April 20, 1938 in Gainesville, Texas, the second of three children of Dora Eva Stephen Carroll and George Joseph (Joe) Carroll, Jr., the town's undertaker. He was a member of the 1955 District Champion football team for Newsome Daugherty Memorial High School. As a teen, he displayed a flair for pranks and kidding that endured throughout his life.

Steve earned a football scholarship to Dartmouth College where, given his facility in math, he studied physics before changing his major to history. He withdrew from Dartmouth and joined the Marines in 1960, serving in Southern California. He was promoted to corporal and qualified as a rifle expert before being released from active duty in 1962. He returned to Texas, where he received a B.S. in civil engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 1966.

After graduate studies at Texas A&M, Steve moved to Baytown, Texas with his young family. He worked as an engineer and manager for Humble Oil (now ExxonMobil) for 27 years.

Steve was active in the Baytown community, serving on the vestry of Trinity Episcopal Church, where he was a member for many years. He also was a longtime member of the Rotary Club and an enthusiastic supporter of the Country Club. He loved to fish and hunt for deer, dove, and turkey. He shared his love of the outdoors with his family, spending vacations in New Braunfels, Galveston, Yellowstone, Big Bend, and the Texas Hill Country where he built a home that relied completely on a rainwater harvesting system.

Although engineering was his profession, Steve was inquisitive about a range of topics, from classical music to natural history. His retirement from Exxon in 1995 freed time for him to pursue his many interests. He learned Spanish in Guatemala. He enjoyed traveling to Canada and around the U.S., particularly as his travels took him to Dartmouth class reunions. He read voraciously about Texas and American history, Christian spirituality, and philosophy.

He was a proud and faithful member of Alcoholics Anonymous for more than 30 years, and he supported many fellow members in their efforts to remain sober.

Steve was lucky to have shared his life with some of the strongest and most intelligent women that this world could offer. He was predeceased by Martha Davies Mayo, his partner of 17 years and his equal in spiritedness, affection, intellectual curiosity, and compassion. He is survived by his wife, Elaine Adams, who brought a sparkle and joy and companionship to his last years.

He is also survived by his daughter Elizabeth Schwartz, her husband Matthew and their children, Olivia, Emily, and Kathryn; son David and his husband Stan Yogi; son Eric Barker, his wife Jade and their daughter Audrey; bonus children Molly Mayo Tampke, her husband Dale and their daughter Kate Bosworth; Sally Mayo; and Thomas Mayo, his wife Amy and their children, Caroline and John Thomas; his favorite sister Cynthia Rogers, her husband Bill; nieces, Kim Foster, Jennifer Rogers, and Katherin Cope; and nephew Charles Rogers.

Those who loved Steve will miss his rumbling chuckles and twinkling eyes after he told a joke. But, we know he is industriously learning all of the angels' names and delighting them with his quips and infectious laughter.

Family and friends are invited to gather at St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas on June 18, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. for his memorial service.

The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, memorials be sent to Dartmouth College or St. Mark's Episcopal Church, Houston, Texas.

Published by Houston Chronicle on Jun. 12, 2022.



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