Obituary: Sean "Binkie" Tyler Stem | Obituaries | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Obituary: Sean "Binkie" Tyler Stem

Published March 31, 2016 at 5:27 p.m.
Updated September 6, 2019 at 11:20 a.m.

Sean "Binkie" Tyler Stem
  • Sean "Binkie" Tyler Stem

Sean "Binkie" Tyler Stem, age 26, Burlington, VT, passed away on March 29, 2016 after fighting a long, terrible, battle of addiction.

He was born in Burlington, VT on April 17, 1989, the son of Kim Palasits and Jeffrey Stem.

Sean was a powerful presence. He always had a warm and welcoming hug for everyone that he met. He had more to give than he could give to himself. His personality was fearless and inviting; his contagious laugh could be picked out of any crowded room. He would do anything for anyone and was loved by all.

Sean was a passionate and talented skateboarder since he was a kid. He was a local skate fixture at all legal and illegal skate venues in the area and beyond. He loved basketball, dogs, and being everyone's friend.

Sean had a particular sensitivity, feeling great pain, and we hope, great love. But at the end some suspect he lacked the capacity to know how deeply he was loved.

Those close to him can only assume that this was the drugs pulling him away from those who meant so much to him. Perhaps the drugs offered him a needed escape from a world too big and overwhelming to manage successfully. We cannot truly know another’s pain, another’s journey. We just know that we must keep on trying. We must keep on reaching out. Those in the know about addiction, especially heroin, must share what they know. Families, siblings, the community has to share this pain, this struggle, so others may know and feel less alone, less confused, less shame. Sean’s family can only hope that his death will not be in vain. Can we all, please, come together, love each other? Tear down whatever obstacles are in the way of reaching out, obstacles of fear, loneliness, shame, stigma, and join other friends and family members who see the ramifications of this drug and feel as powerless as we do.

Sean's journey was impossible at times but he fought so hard to overcome his demons of addiction. Sean's family loved him unconditionally through the good and the bad times and truly supported his fight for recovery.

Sean is survived by his parents- Kim Palasits of Burlington, VT and Jeffrey Stem of Baroda, MI; step parents Ernie Palasits and Robin Stem; siblings Shannon, Megan, Justin, Erin, Colleen, Nick, Ryan, Holly, Mark, Paul, and Barbara; nieces and nephews Jackson, Anthony, Cameron, Alex, Miley, Judah, Emma, Laura, and Sophia; Hannah Deene-Wood and his GFAM.

If you or a loved one is fighting addiction please do everything possible to get them help.

Visiting hours will be held on Sunday from 4 to 7 pm in the Ready Funeral & Cremation Service South Chapel, 261 Shelburne Rd., Burlington. A memorial service will be held on Monday morning at 10 am in the First United Methodist Church on South Winooski Ave. in Burlington. In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to Attorney Norman A. Blais, 289 College Street, Burlington, VT 05401. All proceeds will be used to establish a foundation, in Sean's name, to combat the use of opiates.

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