During high school and college, Stephen was like a brother to both me and our friend Steve Mezei. The three of us were inseparable. I still vividly remember spending afternoons and weekends on Indian Trail hanging out with Stephen and his family. In fact, I may have spent more nights at the Romeo house than at my own house. We had so many good times that it is hard to remember them all. It seems like yesterday when he told me that upon graduating from college he was going to Jackson for a year to work and ski. He traveled cross country with Steve Mezei and a college friend from Marist. The destination was Jackson Hole.
I will never forget the one and only trip I took to Jackson in 1995 to visit Stephen with friends Steve Mezei and Geoff King…I still talk about it like it was yesterday. Stephen took us snowmobiling through Yellowstone the day we didn’t ski. One of the first stops was the ranger’s hut where we received advice on how to handle encounters with the wildlife. Stephen listened intently as the ranger advised to pull over and let the wildlife pass. Geoff, Steve M. and I were more concerned with getting back onto our sleds. The ranger finally finished and we were off. I lead the pack and a few hundred yards down the trail we encountered a heard of Buffalo. I nearly soiled my shorts as I had never seen a Buffalo let alone a heard of them stampeding toward me. I turned my sled around and Geoff and Steve Mezei followed suit. Stephen calmly pulled over to the side of the trail and let the Buffalo pass, while the three flatlanders from the east coast sat on our sleds with our tails between our legs. After that episode, Stephen led the pack the rest of the day.