July 22, 1957 – April 17, 2013
Paul Edward Steczek, the long time owner of Blue Moon Video Store on 8 Mile Rd. in Detroit, died Apr. 17 after a long struggle with a lung infection. He was 55. His husband, Daniel Christine, said the couple would have celebrated their 19th anniversary on Apr. 23.
Steczek, one of four children, grew up in the Herman Gardens project of Detroit. He worked at Backstage Restaurant in the 1980s, and in 1988 became the manager of 24 Hour Video in Detroit, a position he held for 14 years. In 2002, Steczek opened Blue Moon Video. Christine said the store will remain open and that he will continue operating it. “Paul worked so hard to build it. I’m not gonna let it fail,” said Christine.
Steczek learned he was HIV positive 22 years ago. Christine said he met Steczek the first time he walked into 24 Hour Video, and there was an immediate spark. “I was not out before I met Paul,” said Christine who is now retired from a factory job. “He told me he was HIV positive the first time we met. He was always very concerned for me. I am HIV negative and Paul had always said that the disease was his and his alone. He was the most selfless, caring man I ever knew. With the way things are in the community… new HIV cases emerging too often, this is something that needs to be told. Anyone can have a healthy and safe sex life,” said Christine.
Steczek was close with his large, extended family and deeply involved in his Catholic faith. He regularly attended mass until his health declined, after which he watched mass on TV every day. He had been active in Dignity Detroit, regularly attending mass at the Most Holy Trinity Church in Detroit.
A memorial service was Apr. 20 at Harry J. Will Funeral Home in Wayne.