On Wednesday, July 31, 2019, Roland Wayne Street Jr. passed away from diabetes complications in Park City, Utah, at the age of 79. Known as “Stubby” or “Ronnie” to loved ones, he lived an adventurous life with integrity and excellence.
Stubby was born in Orofino, Idaho, on Nov. 26, 1939. His father, Roland Wayne Street Sr., was a nurse in a logging camp, and his mother, Ruthe Chilton Street, dedicated her life to Stubby, his older brother, Bill, and his younger sister, Susie. Stubby inherited his nickname from Ruthe, a short, quick athlete who was called Stubby as a child.
In the early 1940s, the family moved to Marysville, Calif. Stubby was a member of Future Farmers of America (FFA) and, working alongside his father, learned the art of tending a gentleman’s farm with a rose garden, rabbits, livestock and pigeons, which he showed at fairs. He used that expertise later on to build a large and beautiful vegetable garden in Triumph, Idaho. He and his brother were junior roller skating national champions, having been coached by their father. After graduating from high school in Yuba City, Stubby moved to Reno, Nev., where he met his first wife, Del. Soon after, Stubby earned his associate’s degree in hotel and restaurant management at San Francisco City College and became a gourmet chef. In 1961, he and Del welcomed Sunny Mayne Street to the world.
After Stubby and Del separated in 1965, he met Dee Meyer. They married in 1967 and moved to Triumph, Idaho, just southeast of Sun Valley. Stubby loved to ski, and knew he could get a job with the ski resort, which was giving all employees free season passes. In 1969, Roland Wayne Street III, known as Baba, joined the Street family, followed by Picabo Street in 1971. After serving as the chef at Trail Creek Cabin and as a sous-chef at Ketchum’s 319 restaurant, Stubby grew frustrated at how guests treated his food. So, he pursued an apprenticeship in custom masonry with Phil Poynter. After three years, he started Street Masonry, which today is owned and operated by Baba, who first joined Stubby in the family business at 15 years old and took over when Stubby retired. Stubby’s fireplaces, tiles, stone veneers, fences and landscape paths were built to last. His craftsmanship and ethics were highly regarded and well known. Inspectors trusted that Stubby’s work was always built to code.
Stubby loved to ride a motorcycle. He had owned a BSA Victor 441, which he and Dee rode together, and later he rode a Montesa 250 “dirt bike,” which he raced outside of Jerome, Idaho, with the local enthusiasts. An avid hiker and outdoorsman, Stubby loved to fish the high-mountain lakes in the Pioneer, Sawtooth and White Cloud mountains of Idaho. He loved whitewater rafting and took his family and friends down the Middle Fork of the Salmon River many times. Stubby taught Baba and Picabo to ski in the backyard before he’d buy them tickets to Bald Mountain. They were 5 and 7 at the time. Stubby also taught himself how to use a chainsaw and put up eight cords of wood every fall for many years. He also studied karate for several years.
In 2006, Stubby was diagnosed with prostate cancer and cured that year. Stubby was especially proud of two things: being a Marine and being a father. He believed that a child’s greatest advantage was the concern of its parents. He felt that parents are obligated to provide opportunity, so their children can reach their full potential, and that the child always sets the pace. Stubby lived by one rule: If you’re going to do something, do it right or don’t do it at all. He will be sorely missed.
Roland “Stubby” Wayne Street Jr. is survived by his wife, Dee; his children, Sunny, Baba and Picabo; his seven grandchildren; his two great-grandchildren; six nieces; and one nephew.
A celebration of life will be held in Stubby’s honor in Sun Valley, Idaho, later this fall. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to Picabo’s Street of Dreams Foundation (picabosstreetofdreamsfoundation.org/), which gives athletes, innovators and artists striving for excellence the opportunity to achieve their full potential.