Stephen C. Grout, 67, was a true renaissance man: chess master, gifted pianist, deft legal mind and doting husband. He died suddenly on April 12, 2023. He was born September 18, 1955, in Phoenix, Arizona, to George “Bud” and Gerry Grout. Steve was born with congenital heart disease but did not let that deter him in his pursuit of a full, rich life.
Steve attended the University of San Diego for two years prior to transferring to UCSD, majoring in biochemistry and minoring in music. He graduated summa cum laude. He attended Stanford, maintaining a 4.0 grade average, before deciding to pursue a law degree. Steve transferred to the University of Arizona, where he was on the Law Review.
After practicing real estate law for a short time, he joined his father at Grout Properties, and did commercial real estate investments. Subsequently, Steve taught himself investing in mutual funds and ETFs, which he continued throughout his life.
Steve and his soulmate, Barbara, met when they were young children, reconnected briefly in their 20s, and then again in their 30s. Barbara traveled to UCLA with Steve for his first heart surgery in 1990. After feeling more optimistic about the future, he proposed. They married in 1991 and converted to Catholicism together in 2014. They shared a life of love, happiness and adventure, and that strong bond of love and faith will never end. Steve was a comic book collector and had the nickname “Batman.” He also attained the rank of chess master, although Barbara refused to call him “Master,” preferring Honey or Batman.
Steve is survived by his loving wife, Barbara; his parents, Bud and Gerry; his sister Kay (Chris); and extended family, all of whom were loved.
Steve was known to be smart, witty, kind and generous. Per his wishes, Steve donated part of his body to the Organ Donor Network to help others, and his heart and lungs to congenital heart research. He was the longest survivor of the original form of Fontan surgery. He hoped that donation to research would help improve the lives of others with congenital heart disease.
Prior to the Funeral Mass at St. Thomas the Apostle Parish, 2312 E. Campbell Ave. in Phoenix on May 22nd at 1 PM, he will be cremated. Following the Mass, his remains will be placed in a crypt at St. Francis Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Sanctuary Fund at St. Thomas the Apostle Parish, 2312 E Campbell Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona 85016. Condolences may be expressed at www.whitneymurphyfuneralhome.com
Honey I will love you forever! Barb
Uncle Steve, to me, you were a gentle quiet genius, it’s great to see the receipts that support that. Lots of love for Barbara and pups <3
I’m gonna miss you, Stephen. I wish we hadn’t lived so far apart. Thank you very much for your friendship over the years.
In your honor, I re-watched Nolan’s Batman Trilogy (all three movies, back to back to back) a few days ago.
Hey, I just checked. It appears our last chess tournament together was the Arizona Open way back in June of 1997! (I still remember that darn tourney. A win in the final round would have given me sole possession of 1st Place in our section. As it was, I lost and tied for 6th.)
MOM AND DAD
A loving goodbye to our precious son; we joined in the struggle for your good health for many years while you always showed unequal strength and determination. May you finally be free of pain in a beautiful place.
I first met you back in the early 80’s at the Phoenix Chess Club Monday and Friday night weekly meet-ups. I would also see you running their regular tournaments that I participated in.
I will miss your sense of humor and the online jokes you sent me They were thoroughly enjoyed.
Thanks for the memories and most of all, your friendship for all these years.
God Bless and Rest in Peace my friend.
Steve, I will remember you always and with great fondness. I recall you frequently stopping by my chess book display and enlivening my dull hours of waiting for customers. You did great service for the chess community by pitching in with the worst of all jobs–chess organizing. Where would we be without the service of fellows like yourself?
Rest in Paradise, old friend.
We will continue to celebrate Steve always. He will always be with us in spirit. Angelo and I will be sure to cheers a gin and tonic in his honor, always. What an incredible person, kind soul, gentleman, and a true renaissance man. He was so very special. Barb we will always be here for you. Our deepest sympathies. Sending all of our love. Xo Chelsea, Angelo, and the cats.
I met Steve once along with his loving wife ‘Barb’ next door neighbors of my children not long ago! However, I came to be familiar with his many admirable attributes that evoked the most heart felt and exceptional feelings to a human being that lived a full life enjoying his blessings!
Barb, my heart felt condolences, thoughts and prayers to you and the family.
“When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.” – Khalil Gibran
RIP Batman. Thinking of you Barb.
Sending Barb my continued prayers and love. Steve, I will miss our message exchanges re: the World Chess Hall of Fame in STL and my love/hate relationship with White Castles. You will be thought of often but especially on your birthday which you share with my son Carson. Your wit, charm and love for Barb will never be forgotten. Rest in Paradise sweet Steve.
Martha "M" Wasson
Dearest Barb: My heart is heavy with sadness for your loss. Steve’s passing is not just the loss of your husband, but your loving soulmate, confidante, dear friend and companion of so many years, but also that witty and humorous and kind person whom we all loved and enjoyed and who entertained us all with his wit and humor. My continued prayers are going out to you and your family for comfort and tender solace as you all journey through the grief and sadness of Steve’s passing. My memories are flooded with so many different thoughts and feelings. Certainly, mostly I recall the joy, amusement and giggles we shared as I ponder and reflect over the some 35 years or so we have been such close friends and shared and gone through so much together, along with other of our H&P/HPC “sisters” of sort – you know who they are and how deeply you are loved by all. What a gift from God it all turned out to be – such a blessing. Much love to you my dear, dear friend. Hope to see you when I come back in August if not before.
Dear Barbara, You have our sincerest condolences. We remember Stephen fondly and the years he would visit our store. Take good care, Marsha and Alan Giroux, All About Books and Comics
Steve, you were a wonderful brother – in – law and I will miss your smile, your laugh and you make the best darn margaritas ever!R.I.P… no more pain and I know you’re in a much better place.
Love, Jamie Evans
I loved Steve for how happy and complete he made my sister Barbara, for what a funny and intelligent person he was and for being the toughest man I’ve ever known…. ever.
Steve thank you for all of the above and for always putting a smile on my face and a warmth in my heart each time we’ve talked or hung out. You’ll be missed until we meet again.
Lover your brother, Jimbo
Gerry, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family .
Please accept our sincerest condolences for your loss. May Stephen’s memory be eternal.
Truly you are loved, Stephen. I feel honored to have known you and will never forget the night we all dined underground in Poland, my homeland, together! To celebrate your anniversary with good food and music, and to be at Mass with the relic of St Stephen was truly a joy and a privilege. May you be eternally blessed forever!!
I will never forget the 2014 RCIA Inquiry class. Steve and Barbara, you turned a group of strangers into a community in the blink of an eye. I will miss you, Batman. Barbara, my deepest condolences Please be assured of our prayers for you and for the repose of Stephen’s soul.