In Memoriam – Steve Barkan

It is with great sadness that I must report to the Strat-O-Matic Community the passing of former employee, Steve Barkan, at age 74.

It was the late 1960’s and Strat-O-Matic was seeking a shipping clerk. Steve, barely out of high school, applied for the position.  He certainly had the capacity to go to college but elected to pass on additional schooling.  He had a great love for sports and a good feel for numbers.  Strat-O-Matic was a desirable place for him to be.  I believe that it was the only employment position that he ever held.  Always feisty with a very good sense of humor and a very good heart, he eventually advanced to the research department of the company where he would excel.  His major contribution was in the area of old timer baseball statistics.  In the 1960’s and 1970’s, stats beyond the official statistics for historical seasons were almost non-existent.  Later, some box scores were available from Retro-Sheet, but intricate statistical breakdowns were not.  Steve devised a system in which he was able to extract the information necessary to create a historical season. The likes of Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb and Lou Gehrig were brought to life, enabling our customers to utilize these great players in competition against the current stars.  Steve was the guiding strength for this undertaking.  In those years, Steve and James Williams formed the core our research department compiling data for our baseball, football, basketball and hockey games.

Steve enjoyed involving himself with our customer base, so much so that to many, he was the face of the Company.  Combining a feistiness with good sense of humor, he became the voice of Strat-O-Matic for many Strat fans.  It must be admitted that on occasion he would overstep his bounds in his pronouncements and eventually end up in my office.  A discussion would ensue.   Steve would humbly apologize and be on good behavior before repeating the same situation.  He just loved to be the first with information about the Company.  With all his antics, he maintained a very stable composure.  I remember once, in a heated situation, I lost my cool and it was Steve who said to me, “Hal you can’t lose your cool-you are our leader.” He was right.  On occasion, he was called upon to speak before a gathering and was very entertaining. He was well-liked by all. He was a very giving person, always assisting people in need.

Steve’s final years were difficult health-wise.  However, he never lost his enthusiasm for life.  We shall miss him.

Hal Richman

Funeral Arrangements

Sunday January 28th, at 12 pm (noon)

Gutterman’s Funeral Home

8000 Jericho Turnpike

Woodbury, NY 11797

6 Replies to “In Memoriam – Steve Barkan”

  1. albert p tranghese says:

    As a Strat geek born in 1949 and started playing in 1965 I have enjoyed the hobby my entire life, thanks to people like Steve. My condolences to everyone at Strat and his family

  2. Brad says:

    A real bummer. His name was synonymous with Strat-O-Matic. May you RIP Steve.

  3. RICH D says:

    STEVIE B!!


    I started playing Strat in 1965. As with many, It has been time very well spent. For someone like Steve, who spent his working years at Strat O Matic it had to be a dream job. My condolences to his family.

  5. Albidone says:

    You had to take Steve with a grain of salt, and you had to know how to communicate with him. I NEVER had any issues with Steve, and although we never met in person, we chatted numerous times on-lone on various forums.

  6. JOHNVALLERO says:

    I’m so sorry to hear of Steve’s passing he was a delight to talk too i spoke to him several times on the phone he would always try and help me with any problems i was having with installing the upgrade each year . He will be missed RIP Steve thank you for all your help

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