Helping Families and Friends Honor Their Loved Ones

Stephen W. Fanning

On June 25, 2020 the life of Stephen “Steve” Walter Fanning, age 30, of Rancho Santa Margarita, CA was tragically cut short. Steve is survived by his devoted parents Lester L. and Jane (Gray) Fanning of Hubbardston, MA; sister Katherine Fanning, and her husband Randolph Hawke of Rutherford NJ; and brother Jacob L. Fanning and his husband Brett Larson of NYC, NY.  His loss will also be mourned by many loving aunts, uncles, cousins, and many devoted friends in CA, Matt, Will, Marshall, Hui, and his girlfriend Nicole, as well as countless other lives he touched.

Steve revelled in life’s quiet moments; whether it was enjoying a top shelf spirit on the dock enjoying the vistas of Lake Winnipesaukee or sitting quietly, listening to music as the sun set on a new horizon at a beach. Steve was a gentle soul who loved his family, friends, and cats.  He loved to laugh, smile, and had a wonderful wicked dry sense of humor, even while struggling with his demons. His life should not only be remembered for the high points, but also for his strength and resilience. He endured so much in his life, including the same drug epidemic that has affected so many families in this country. Over the past dozen years Stephen struggled with addiction. He never gave up on trying to get beyond it and forward to recovery. We beamed with pride through all of his accomplishments, as well as shared in his despair. He was a brave fighter, and he gave this disease a hell of a fight.

Steve saw more of the USA than most. He was born in Worcester MA, lived in FL and UT, attended The Woodlands High School in TX, and graduated from Watertown High School in CT. He played defense for the Watertown-Pomperaug High School varsity hockey team and also on adult leagues thereafter. He received his AB from Naugatuck Valley Community College in CT and was a Junior at Western Connecticut State University majoring in Business and Marketing while working his way through college as General Manager at CubeSmart. In 2018, Steve chose recovery in CT and moved to Ohio House sober living in CA. While in recovery, he learned to navigate life, always going out of his way to help others. He excelled as a Senior Sales Manager at KMG Imports in Irvine, CA. While in CA, Steve continued his passion for hockey, playing defense in several adult leagues.  He loved living in California, the coastal beaches, trying his hand at surfing, and other sports.

His last days were good days. Stephen was a blessing to everyone he met; one of the kindest, most considerate, generous, and loving people whose light shone brightly and too briefly. His death leaves an enormous hole in our hearts and our lives. We pray that he is in the loving arms of his devoted grandparents, Lester and Joan Fanning, Sr., who preceded him in death, and is flying with angels.

Family and friends will be invited to gather in a celebration of his life at an online graveside service, followed by internment at Glenwood Cemetery in Maynard MA.

Online memories and condolences may be shared with the family at Steve’s online obituary posted at

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to help others struggling with addiction in Stephen’s name to Ohio House (; SMART Recovery (; or Narcotics Anonymous (

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