Steve was born in Richmond in 1924 and spent a little time in his early childhood in Gippsland, where his father was a teacher, before moving back to Richmond to live with his grandmother when he started school. He began his primary education at Yarra Park School in Richmond and then attended West Preston State School. A strong memory of his primary school experience is the large class sizes – up to 70 children in a class – and the authority of the teachers, ‘you never queried what your teacher said, there was no challenging’. Steve recalls how young students at this time were quite independent, going across the road for lunch and riding bicycles long distances to get to school. He attended two high schools: the first, Coburg High, where he remembers his Latin teacher inspiring a long-lasting love of the language. The second high school he attended was Melbourne High, which he remembers fondly, noting Geology excursions, the library and academic rigor as important aspects of that experience. He left Melbourne High at the age of 15 and started work in the State Bank, studying commerce at university alongside his work. Part-way through his degree he left for World War II and continued his work and study when he returned. He worked for the State Bank for 49 years. Steve is proud of the family tradition of attendance at Melbourne High School and the value of academic study, instilled in him by both his family and his teachers.
Primary: Yarra Park Primary School, Richmond, Melbourne, Victoria (early 1930s)
Primary: West Preston State School, Melbourne, Victoria (early 1930s)
Secondary: Coburg High School, Melbourne, Victoria (1935–1937)
Secondary: Melbourne High School (1938–1939)
University of Melbourne (1940–1943, then post 1945)