Stephen Byrne '75, a popular Texas A&M construction science educator and construction industry leader who helped shaped the top rated construction science program at Texas A&M, passed away Feb. 11 from complications due to back surgery. He was 59 years old.
Byrne, a senior lecturer in the Department of Construction Science, was pursuing a doctorate degree in architecture at Texas A&M at the time of his death. At various times throughout his teaching career, he managed the department’s internship programs and career fairs and served as executive director of the department's Construction Industry Advisory Council.
He earned a Bachelor of Environmental Design degree at Texas A&M in 1975 and a Master of Science in Building Construction at Texas A&M in 1978.
A certified professional constructor and fellow of the American Institute of Constructors, Byrne also served as the organization’s past-president. He previously worked for the Texas A&M University System as associate executive director of facilities, planning and construction.
"Although Texas A&M was close to his heart, Steve’s greatest love was his family," said an obituary released by the funeral home. "He was a devoted husband of 41 years, loving father and grandfather. He made it a priority to be there for his family and took great pride in coaching sports for his son and attending his grandson’s games."
A former member of First Baptist Church in College Station, Byrne was actively involved as chairman of the deacons, chairman of the finance committee, and as an usher. He and his wife, Penny, later joined the Central Baptist Church in College Station.
"Steve bled maroon,” said the obituary. "He loved Aggie football and baseball and took great pride in mentoring the next generation of Aggies."
He is survived by his wife of 41 years, Penny Byrne of College Station; daughter, Shawn McDaniel of The Woodlands; son and daughter-in-law, Paul and Laura Byrne of Dallas; grandson, Mason McDaniel of The Woodlands; father, Bill Byrne of San Antonio; sisters, Sandi Taylor of San Antonio and Susan Byrne of Houston; a niece, Susanne Dobry of Pleasanton.
A donation payable to the Texas A&M Foundation with a note directing the donation to the Stephen P. ‘75 and Paul M. ’02 Byrne Endowed Scholarship Fund can be mailed to Larry Zuber, Texas A&M Foundation, College of Architecture, 3137 TAMU, College Station, Tx, 77843-3137. Zuber can also be contacted at 979.845.0939.