My longtime attorney, Stephen Beik, was saved watching Christian TV years ago and then made a major impact in this industry for several decades before he died recently at age 74. He was also my good friend and lived two streets over from me. He was a great man, and I'm grieving his loss.
Steve's life was changed after he watched Jimmy Swaggart on TV and gave his life to the Lord. He had a heart for the ministry of Christian TV. I remember he was legal counsel to SuperChannel 55 here in Central Florida. The last time I saw him was when we played golf with Channel 55 founder Claud Bowers and my longtime friend Florida Rep. Scott Plakon not long ago. He loved golf and was good at it.
I met him when we attended the same church in the 1980s when we were both in our 30s. We served together in many ways and when our company needed a new attorney, we moved our account to his firm. He primarily handled our book contracts and business deals. But once when we had a difficult situation with the Christian Booksellers Association, he helped us work through it.
I can remember when Steve built a beautiful new home, never thinking we would later buy one nearby. Once we were invited to a Fourth of July party at his home. We became good friends with his wife, Missy, who later became a pastor. I watched his children Chrissie, Paul, Jackie and Aaron grow up. Aaron was a high school friend of my youngest son, Chandler, on the high school newspaper.
In 1996 when the Olympics were in Atlanta, I attended with Steve and two other friends. He was a great athlete even later in life. I was shocked to learn he died of COVID-19. He was only four years older than I.
Growing up in Pennsylvania, he was state champion in tennis in 1964. Later he was on the basketball and tennis teams at Wesleyan University. He went on to law school at Vanderbilt University.
Steve left the private practice of law to help Rory and Wendy Alec establish GodTV in America. He continued in that role for many years as general counsel and chief administrator for GodTV plus serving on the board for many Christian ministries. He was well known and respected in Christian television circles.
Steve Beik was a man of highest ethics and integrity, well liked by all who knew him. Despite all the lawyer jokes, he was a really nice man.
His passing is a loss to the body of Christ, but we know he is with the Jesus he loved and served faithfully for many years. I'll miss him as a friend, and I'm glad I was able to record my thoughts in a podcast you can listen to here.
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