Robert A. Steadman
Robert Steadman grew up near Syracuse, New York, the second oldest of five children. The family moved to Michigan, where his dad was hired as the state’s financial controller. Bob graduated from Wayne University Law School in February of 1951, having earned his Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Law, and Juris Doctor degree in five-and-a-half years, all while working nights on the Ford Rouge Plant’s engine line. Drafted in May of 1951 for the Korean conflict, he completed Officer Candidate School and was discharged as a second lieutenant late in 1953. Steadman had the good fortune of working one year with the best attorney in Flint and also a year as assistant prosecutor, an intensive introduction to trial work. While learning to fly at Flint’s Bishop Airport, he met and married his instructor, Bernice Trimble, already a famous racing pilot, in 1959. His aviation expertise led to a position as corporate and trial attorney for Airway Insurance Company in Ann Arbor, where he defended aviation death cases from Massachusetts to Alaska for several years. He turned down the company presidency in 1972 and chose to move to Traverse City instead. Bob was eighty-one in 2009 when he tried and won his last jury case with an award of $400,000 for fraud against a local bank. He then cared for Bernice during her remaining years of illness until he lost her in 2016 after fifty-seven wonderful years. Since 2018, he has served as president of Senior Center Friends in Traverse City, an advocacy group for the Traverse City Senior Center. He continues to enjoy fishing and pheasant hunting with his buddy Larry Lelito and his German shorthair pointer, Belle.