SANTEE, Calif. (KGTV) — Sunday, the community came together to honor the life of Santee plane crash victim Steve Krueger.
Steve died on October 11 when a small aircraft struck his UPS truck while he was making deliveries. A Celebration of Life was held at the Santee Town Center Community Park.
Steve was well-known for his upbeat personality. His brother, Jeffrey Krueger, said he wanted the event to be a joyous occasion in memory of him.
“Steve and I already talked about something like this. He didn’t want people sad or mourning," Jefferey said.
The celebration featured food, fellowship, bouncy houses, and even a sweet tooth station for Steve's love of treats.
It also incorporated his 30-year career with UPS.
Jeffrey says over time Steve's co-workers become his second family. They helped coordinate the event.
"We traveled together, camped together, water skii together," Oliver Jones said.
Jones met Steve when they started working together at UPS in 1991. He remembers his long-time friend for his optimism and charisma.
“His laughter will make a whole room light up," Jones said. "He always had great stories to tell.”
More than anything, Steve had a passion for what he did and would often take time on his route to talk to customers.
“If he didn’t make a stop he’d drive by and wave and he loved all their dogs. He carried dog treats everywhere he went," Jeffrey said.
Jeffrey said his brother also knew how to balance hard work with having a good time.
“He took a lot of time to have fun. He went water skiing, snow skiing, a lot of friends," Jeffrey said.
It’s safe to say Steve lived life to the fullest. His lasting impression brings comfort to those who knew him best.
“It made dealing with his death a lot easier when so many people had such affection for him." Jeffery said.
The family was also presented with a memorial resolution by Senator Toni Atkins, which highlights Steve's impact on the community.