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Stephen Haile Bradford

  • On December 29, 2021
Stephen Haile Bradford was born September 11, 1953, in New Bedford, Massachusetts, to George Leroy Bradford and Alice Buckingham Bradford.  The family later moved to Michigan City, Indiana, where he spent most of his childhood.
Stephen graduated from Western Michigan University with a degree in Aviation, and later earned a Masters degree in Commercial Aviation from Delta State University.
While working in aviation jobs, he lived in Tulsa, OK, South Sioux City, NE, Indianapolis, IN, Laurel, MD, and Alexandria, VA, before settling in the Pittsburgh area in 1988.
His airline career began in 1986 when he was hired by USAir, and ended with his retirement from American Airlines in 2018.
Steve Bradford was a Professional Airline Captain with a 30 year history of demonstrated success in leadership positions.  He was a founding father and first president of the US Airline Pilots Association.
In his professional positions, Captain Bradford established and maintained the highest professional standards for his crew and his union, especially during turbulent periods of management/labor negotiations.
Captain Bradford was responsible for ensuring the  timely, safe and efficient integration of three airline pilot groups during a merger that created the largest airline in the world, American Airlines.
He died suddenly, December 27, 2021, in his McMurray, PA home.
He is survived by his wife of 36 years, Sally, their two children, Daniel and Emily, and his three sisters, Judith Druener (Ronald) of Panama City, FL, Alexa Bradford (Delton Simmons) of Santa Fe, NM, and Elizabeth Bradford of Seattle, WA.

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Janet Warren
My deepest condolences to the Bradford family. (Steve was my next door neighbor on Belle Plain Trail and classmate all through elementary school.) I am so very sorry to hear of this. Losing a husband and a dad is so very hard. He was so very kind to me in helping me to brought back into the "the fold" of our Long Beach Elementary School 2018 reunion when I was "lost" to the group, having moved away for so many years. In doing so, he helped me mourn my own mother's recent death by "coming together" once again. We were JUST chattering away online this fall about how those of us who went to school together might do so in 20222 or 2022. WE HAVE ALL LOST A GREAT FRIEND AND CLASSMATE.- Janet Warren- Class of 67 , as Stephen Bradford "coined it".
Curtis Sprague
I was so sorry to hear of Steve's passing. I have so many fond memories from our childhood, in particular was a trip to Massachusetts with Steve,Roy and my dad. Roy flew us there. Just one of many great memories. My sincere condolences to his family.
Becky (Hammond) Thomas Natale
My deepest sympathy to your family. Steve was a wonderful man whom I knew for almost 50 years. I’ll treasure all the hilarious memories we shared through school and, more recently, his determination and dedication in planning our reunions; we Long Beach kids would never have reconnected without him. I will always miss him.
Linda Ragosta
Extending my sincere condolences to the Bradford family. Steve’s sudden passing. is heartbreaking news to so many. Steve was a Long Beach School and Jr. High classmate and friend. He and his band the Cast Iron Canaries played at a moving away party for me and all our LB fiends in 1969 when my family was moving back to Massachusetts. After many of us reconnected via Facebook Steve organized a reunion of our LBS Class of ‘67 in Michigan City and Long Beach in 2016 and 2018. It was a rare and important closing the loop experience for all of us. We are grateful to Steve for this gift and his friendship, many talents, and great humor. He will always be remembered. Keeping the Bradford Family in my thoughts.
Robert Cooper
Stephen was a childhood friend. His accomplishments in life are very impressive. He was very kind and always looked out for his friends in grade school. He was planning a get together for this coming Summer. Our condolences to the family for his sudden loss. He is back in the skies above now we’re he loved to be.
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