4.11.2011

A Memory Of Pete - By Another Family Member


One of my favorite memories of my Uncle Pete was when i was a little kid. On sunday's we would all pile into my Grandfather's stationwagon and go to my Aunt Patty's house for Bagel's,Coffee and alot of conversation. We would spend the whole day there running around like maniacs with all of our cousins. On the way home I would always fall asleep in Peter's arms. When we got home he would carry me to bed,kiss me on the forehead and tell me how much he loved me.Please take a second of your time to honor my Uncle Peter. His Music,His Smile,His Caring and Loving ways. I will cherish all of my memories and pass them on to my own child so Peter's Legacy will never die. Thank you and I love you Pete ... your niece Marie

26 comments:

  1. I am so very sorry that your family and yourself have to deal with this, Marie. I have had all of you in my thoughts and prayers over the last year and I know it has been so hard to lose such a driving force in your lives. It certainly isnt fair at all what has happened. I will continue to have the entire RATAJCZYK family in my thoughts and prayers as yet another year shall pass. What a lonely life it has become knowing your Uncle Pete is no longer here. Blessed be, Marie.

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  2. Thank YOU Mary for commenting on my post. You have become a good friend and I love reading your FB page. ~ Marie

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  3. Mary you always have a way of writing exactly what I & so many of us feel, thats why I love you Sista!

    Marie, thank you so much for sharing your story of your Uncle Pete, it really tugged at my heart. I would like to thank the Ratajczyk family for creating this blog and taking the time to open up to us all and share stories. I am FOREVER greatful for having the pleasure of meeting Peter and telling him what a genius & inspiration he was. As always, much love and respect to all of Peter's family, friends, & loved ones. ~Carrie Schwarz

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  4. I'd like to second what Mary has said, and I'm sure a lot of other people feel the same way. I like reading Mary's fb page too :)
    Lois x

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  5. Carrie,

    Thank you for your comment about my personal story about Peter. I'm so glad that you enjoyed meeting Peter. I thank you for being a friend of the family.

    Please check back for more

    Hug, Marie

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  6. Thank you for sharing this wonderful photo of you and your uncle Pete, Marie! My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family. It is so very apparent that Pete was much loved by his family and his family was the most important part of his life! Thanks to this forum, I would like to give my deepest respect & sympathies to the entire Ratajczyk family.

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  7. Dear Marie,

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful story about Peter. He must have been such a great Uncle. Your story shows he had a strong caring side. I am sure your children will love to hear the stories you pass down to them. Thank you again for sharing. RIP Peter Steele.---Jessica

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  8. Thank you for sharing this beautiful story with us Marie
    You and your family are in my thoughts

    sending much green love

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  9. Thank you Christi for commenting. This means the world to me.

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  10. Thank you for sharing Marie. I know its been a tough year for the family. We all knew how precious Peter was, but the family is giving us yet another side of just how precious he truly was. He is forever loved and missed by so many. God bless you and keep you. I think of you all and love you. Hugs

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  11. Marie, thank you for sharing your memories with me and so many others. When i read the stories such as your's my heart just melts and puts a smile on my face. Your uncle peter is very loved and he will never be forgotten as well as his music. he was one of a kind and he will never be replaced by anyone or anything in this life or the here after. I'm happy that he had such wonderful, lovely people such as yourself and the rest of your family in his life. I regret that i had never got the opportunity to meet him,i would of loved the chance to at least see him in person to let him know the gratitude that i have for him and his music and the impact and inspiration it has brought to my life, Thank you again marie for sharing your wonderful memory of him. .....Sincerely Windy :)

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  12. Wow, thanks to everyone for their great comments to me. I was a little timid about talking about these memories, but your kind words have made me understand how much he touched your lives too.

    You all are amazing to me ... thanks ~ Marie

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  13. Thanks for sharing. Just goes to show how passionate Pete was about the things and people he loved. I didnt know him personally but I knew that was the case simply because he was able to express that through his music and interviews. Your uncle is a legend, be proud ;)

    Chase F

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  14. Thanks Chase F:

    We are very proud of him ... thank you for posting

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  15. i just wanted to let you know that not only did peters music change my life but it also has helped me meet some wonderful people that will be w/ me for life. not a day goes by that i don't listen to his music. i have a the playlist on my desktop at work and i jam out everyday. even my 6yr old knows the words to most of the songs. i will not go one day w/o listening to him. it helps me make it through the day. i could never tell him how much i appropriated him music but telling you is good enough for me. i know the one year anniversary is just around the corner and i will be raising my voice very loud that day and everyone around me will know who Peter Steele is. I will make sure of it.

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  16. Only knew him from his videos and music, which means I could not have really known him.Yet I grieve for him and can not imagine the pain his family must feel.I want to thank you for all you have shared,and will share. I hope it helps.

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  17. ive told a few people this,your family being some ...peters music literally saved my life.i know that sounds cliche but it is the truth.his playing inspired me to devolpe my own style of playing bass and through his music i would escape my own hellish reality.thank you peter for being there when i needed ya.thank you to his family for being there now.god bless you all.
    -erik hernandez-

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  18. Wow. What beautiful memories. I hope you cherish those memories now and in death. What a lucky lady you are.

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  19. It is so wonderful to know that Peter had such a beautiful family. I'm grateful to you all for sharing so much with the fans on this blog. It really shows how much he was loved. Peter will always be in my heart and I still listen to his voice every day. He really wrote a song for every occasion. My thoughts and prayers are with the family.

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  20. y Thanks to Marie, for letting me express myself, and asking her permission first, on Face Book, before reprinting this, here. Thank you in advance, and many blessings!

    [I will have to do this in several parts since Blogger only accepts 4,096 characters at one time!]


    I think that after 12.5 years of holding this in, that I can finally talk about this...but with a bit of difficulty.
    I don't know what you're going through, we all have our trials within our lifetime; I know I have had plenty in mine. One thing that I will tell you is this: everything happens for a reason. I believe that your uncle (who was more like a brother to you), helped to save me from the disbelief of losing the love of my life. I went to many Type O concerts, and was never disappointed by any that I had attended from the first one to last. Some of the first ones, I had attended with my fiance, Reginald Gibson. We met in the Navy and spent 8.5 years together. We were married in our hearts, but we were always too scared to take the next step. It wasn't till he also had gotten sober (Yes, he was an alcoholic, something he was not very proud of, and struggled for years to kick the habit: only when his Senior Chief sent him to Re-hab, did he finally overcome it.), that we had finally decided to make things 'legal', not only for ourselves, but our poor mothers, who wanted us to be an (as they said to us both) 'honest couple', and we wanted to spend the rest of lives growing old together. Yet other things happened. His own mother had a stroke, and we had to put things on hold, for awhile. Along with him being stationed overseas, in Kelivick, Iceland did not make things any easier. We made plans, like any couple that wanted a future together. When his mom was back on the road to recovery, it was when I put him back on a plane, back to Iceland, did I have a dreadful feeling that I would never see him, like he was, ever again. But, he assured me that we be together, in six more months when his overseas duty would be over. We were to be married on my birthday, July 14th, of that same year. He called me, a week before he passed away. He was in the best spirits, that I have ever heard form him. We talked about our love for each other, our families, and the want to have many children. I never forgot that wonderful conversation. I never felt such a deep love for me or life, as I had from Reggie, than at this very moment. We use to call each other every two weeks. So I couldn't wait till he called home again. A week later, his aunt called me. I thought she was playing a cruel joke on me. All I can remember, after I hung up the phone, I was hitting the floor, before passing out. The love of my life passed from this world, to the next on April 17th, 2000. All I could ask is why? He was just 36 years old. And his heart gave out on him, too. That's what his Senior Chief had told his mother and myself, at his wake, a week later. It was an emotional roller-coaster for his Uncle, his Mother, and I, to get him back for burial. .....Go to Page 2.

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  21. Pt 2:

    Go forward about three years (2003, I think); it was Fleet Week, I was in New York City with members of my unit, and it was Friday the 13th. Many of them saw that I was still feeling down. They took me (damned well bought my ticket, then dragged me there)to CBGB to see Type O Negative, to get my mind off of things, mostly being on duty, on the damned ship most of the day. We all wore our CBU Jackets, (since most of us served in the Middle East), because we didn't have the sense enough to pack any decent cold weather gear. To make a long story short, I think we, as a group, was getting some crap, for being in the military. We were about to leave, and I think it was your Uncle who intervened, for us. I hear a big booming voice, telling the crowd that they should have more respect for people who serve their country. I think that he threw in some other choice words (I will not say what those were!), and then the harassment suddenly stopped. All of us stayed, we still did not want any trouble (since none of us drank, just wanted a night out, duty and trouble free), and enjoyed the rest of the performance. I remember that all of us in the unit had gotten to talk to the guys later. (Still really don't know how that happened; so most of us in the unit were still gun-shy of many people.) It was more of your uncle asking about what we did in the Navy, why we were in, where we had served (countries we had been to), how long we had been in, and why we were there (Fleet Week of course). I have to say, all the hear-say I had heard about your Uncle, in past from other people, talking mess (I think they were just jealous.), just went right out the window. I'm the kind of person that likes to make my own conclusions about people; so I don't listen to what others have to say. Talking to him, was like I was talking with one of my Uncles, Cousins, or my own Brother. He made all of us feel welcome (along with the other guys), and gave me the impression he was a very intelligent man, who was an open book, but didn't let people on to how smart he really was! One of the guys, in my unit, let it slip out that they invited me, to the show, because they didn't like to see me 'so out of it', since the passing of my fiance'. ....Go to Page 3.

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  22. Pt 3:

    That in the past, we (Reggie and I) use to go to many of their shows. It was then your Uncle went back inside of the building (Man, I thought we had scared him; we sailors are good at doing that!), and then after about five minutes came back out with one of his guitar picks. He put it in my hand, along with a piece of paper, and gave me some advice I never forgot: "He's looking over you! Tell me that you know that, right?" That's when the waterworks came out! I couldn't cry at my fiance's wake, because I had to be strong for his mom. I couldn't cry, at Reginald's funeral, because I had be a Petty Officer, first. I did not cry for a long time, afterwards, because I thought I was okay with his passing. At that moment I found out that I wasn't. I think all of the guys in my unit knew this, but your uncle saw it. He helped me to come to terms with it, that evening. I never had gotten to thank him for that, or for the short letter he wrote....if I ever find it, again. (I know it's around my home somewhere; as a Cancer, I keep all the letters I get.) So I wanted to thank you, his niece, since I never did get to say it to him; "Thank you, with all my heart and soul!" The words were nothing but encouraging. But to make a long letter shorter, I think that Creator will take a person at their prime. When he decides that it is okay to make them a part of heaven. It's something that I read, in a book, years later, from Saint Padre Pio, which made me realize this. "When the sinner is ready to give their heart and soul to our Lord, this is the time that they will be filled with an uttermost joy and happiness. They know that they have pleased our Lord, and that their sins have been forgiven through their suffering. This is the most certain time that they too will become one of his angels, for he is in need of their services more in heaven, than on Earth." To me it just means that Creator had more need of Reggie and Peter in heaven, than we needed them here. In my heart and soul, I know they both fought their demons and won. And they are both watching, and laughing with each other, in the comforts of the other life. Their mortal bodies might of been exhausted, but their souls will live on. I hope this does not make you sad, I still have a difficult time writing about Reginald (He always felt that your uncle should been more appreciated for his gifts, and this is the way we both felt.), since I tear up so easily, but I have I feeling that both of them are having a conversation about the both of us, as I write this. Plus...your uncle, I know, strongly, that he's always around you (like Reggie is for me); there's no doubt of this!



    Many blessings/Prayers to you and your family!

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  23. Rose from NY now in CA2:22 AM, February 08, 2013

    My heart still breaks for you honey and your family. Yes Peter was one of the most real, beautiful blessings from heaven this world has seen. So sweet, so honest. When he spoke I would get chills, that voice. We miss him beyond the moons and stars Marie. No one who heard his music and heard his voice will ever forget him you can believe that. I'm from NY too, we have a special love for our family. We feel like your family now since you were so generous to share memories of this magnificent man with the fans. God has a special man up there now and he will be watching over you forever now. He's with his mom, dad and loved ones he cherished and his soul is resting with them. Know you are loved, we send you lots of love and prayers. Peter taught us about love so thank you Peter for that. Pass along the love, ok? You take care now. Peace to you all.

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  24. We all love him so much, god bless you and your family, Pete still lives in our hearts and will be forever! Take care!

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  25. you guys should keep posting..
    I loved reading these.

    I still miss Peter after 5 years, and it would be nice to hear from you guys again <3

    -Brooke
    [Facebook:Brooke Valmont]

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