Stephen Douglas “Steve” Cole I

Stephen Douglas “Steve” Cole I, Paoli, passed away Dec. 22, 2021. He was born on July 18, 1948, to Custer and Dorothy Cole in Louisa, KY. Steve was raised in Hamlet where he created life-long friends, graduating from Oregon-Davis High School in 1966. After high school, Steve followed in his father’s footsteps and voluntarily enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and spent his 19th birthday in Vietnam. His MOS (job) was AM-Trac Crew Chief. He received two purple hearts as a result of combat injuries.

He returned to Indiana in 1968 and met Rhonda Lynn Stoneburner and made her his wife on Dec. 7, 1969. He married her on Pearl Harbor Day, stating he’d never forget their anniversary that way.

Steve and Rhonda moved to Orange County in 1974. A month later, Steve and Rhonda welcomed a daughter, Sheila Diane, and two years later a son, Stephen Douglas II.

Steve went on to purchase Internal Honing Service in Paoli and successfully ran a thriving business until his retirement in 2013. Steve and Rhonda were avid travelers and visited all 48 states in the continental US in their traveling years. Steve was a friend to many, rarely passing up the opportunity for a good time, a fun-spirited prank, or an opportunity to tell a dirty joke or two. Steve will fondly be remembered for his trivia prowess and his uncanny ability to remember everyone’s birthday.

In 1998, Sheila married Ray (Brown) and often said he couldn’t have hand-picked a better son-in-law.

In 2005, Steve became a proud grandpa to Katrina, and he considered it the best title he ever had. He doted on Katrina often and took joy in sharing a love of percussion and drumming with her.

Steve is preceded in death by his parents, his younger brothers David and Robert, and his dear son Steve, who we lost in 2018.

He was a member of the Paoli Masonic Lodge #119 F & AM.

Steve is survived by his wife of 52 years Rhonda; daughter Sheila (Brown); son-in-law Ray Brown; and beloved granddaughter, Katrina Brown. Also surviving are Steve’s older brother, Michael Cole; his niece, Rebecca Cole; sister-in-law Connie Cole; and nephew Austin Cole.

Funeral Services were Thursday, Dec. 30, 2021, at the Dillman-Scott Funeral Home. Visitation services were Dec. 30, with a Masonic Service that followed. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Steve’s name to the Paoli VFW Post 8302. Online Condolences may be made at