April 25, 2004
The Macomb Daily
The Anchorville resident delivers approximately 160 papers during the week and 345 Sunday papers for The Macomb Daily. Due to increased symptoms from the multiple sclerosis he's suffered from since 1975, Steele was forced to admit he could no longer conduct the exhausting route and needed to rest.
For 15 years, Dan Steele has made the same trek daily - and an even longer one on Sundays.
The Anchorville resident delivers approximately 160 papers during the week and 345 Sunday papers for The Macomb Daily. Today, however, is his last route.
"I'll miss it, but it's something I have to do," he said.
Due to increased symptoms from the multiple sclerosis he's suffered from since 1975, Steele was forced to admit he could no longer conduct the exhausting route and needed to rest.
"I've been trying to fight it and everything but the last couple of years have been hard," he said. "As much as I hate to admit it and give MS the upper hand ... I just can't do it anymore."
Multiple sclerosis is an abnormal condition where lesions of scarring occur to the connective tissue of the central nervous system. Pain or numbness in varying parts of the body is also common.
Co-workers of Steele's, including his boss, Steve Buckner, say the diligence he's shown is truly remarkable. Buckner said Steele has actually had the best service record in the district for the past three years despite his illness.
"I really think of it like the end of an era," Steele said. "That's the way I look at it. Now, though, I'm basically going to fight this MS so it doesn't beat me."
Steele said his customers expressed disbelief and sadness when he told them he was retiring.
"They all sent me cards and gave me a call and said how sad they were I was leaving," Steele said. "That kind of makes me feel good, that what I did was appreciated."
Steele joined The Macomb Daily after leaving the Detroit newspapers during the strike.
"That (strike) never sat well with me but I was happy to come here," he said.
He kept his initial motor route in Algonac until 1995 when he expanded to encompass Chateau Estates mobile home park. His route has remained pretty much the same since then.
Steele said he wouldn't have been able to hang on as long as he did without the aid of his friends, Cathy Golden and Patty Posey, and his former district manager, John Tranchida.
"I really could go on and on," he said. "I'm going to miss this, it's
been my life for so long, but I'm ready to focus on my health now. I'll
miss working though."
Copyright © 2004, The Macomb Daily