Stephan Todd Wahl, a very loving and devoted father, husband, and son died unexpectedly on October 19, 2020 at the age of 47 from complications due to a tragic cycling accident while descending the road of Olympic Parkway in Park City, Utah. “Todd”, as he was known to friends and family, was born on October 27th, 1972 to Bette and Richard Wahl in Libertyville, Illinois. Growing up in Louisville, Kentucky, as a young boy he demonstrated a loving, gentle, and compassionate nature, at one time pleading for his parents to rescue an injured cat found on the side of the road. Todd and his bother Jeff nursed it back to health and it was later adopted. Even when very young he was a constant helper. He followed his Dad around, one time climbing behind him up a two-story ladder to lend his assistance. Todd was the first to stand up and help those in need, either by leading kids through bible summer camp, building shacks in Jamaica as a part of a mission trip, or doing mission work on the West side of Louisville. His parents tell of his skill at all things using his hands: from woodworking to other artistic endeavors, he naturally excelled. If he didn’t know how to do something his independent and inventive nature would surely find a way. Todd’s adventurous pursuits started young, when at the age of 5 he fashioned himself a homemade parachute out of a cereal box and string in order to jump off the shed. Todd loved and looked up to his older brother Jeff, following his great protector around, aspiring to grow up and be more than the ball boy on Jeff’s soccer team. Even as adults their healthy competition left the family laughing when they invariably made comparisons of height and hair volume. Todd loved family and his was one in million. They taught him to be a helper, to stand up for the underdog and take time to listen to those in need.
At the young age of fifteen Todd started working as a trim carpenter, which ignited a passion and talent that would later evolve into him becoming a Project Manager for Tall Pines Construction in Park City, Utah. He helped manage the day-to-day operations of high-end custom homes with skill and experienced knowledge. His job at Tall Pines was a career he loved and he felt a deep loyalty to its success, innovation and high-end construction. He was a devoted project manager and gave his all for the good of Tall Pines and his brotherly boss, Garrett Strong, as well as his wonderful coworkers who he grew to love as family.
Todd has always enjoyed and excelled in competitive and athletic pursuits. Todd was captain of his high school soccer team, an avid rock climber in areas such as the beautiful Red River Gorge, and a talented snowboarder. Snowboarding is what brought him out to Utah, and he had many fun times with the Salty Peaks crew. Once in Utah, his early twenties consisted of crazy, adventurous travel, punk music shows with his band of brothers, which often led to countless risky predicaments that he would recount for years afterwards. During that period he met and married his first wife, Julie Peterson, with whom he maintained a cordial relationship over the years.
You could say Todd was a man with nine lives. He was a risk-taker by nature which led to uniquely fun experiences and dangerously compromising scenarios, yet he continued to ultimately land on his feet. In 2008, after some rocky years, Todd chose a new path in life: he chose to get sober and join the recovery community. On April 5, 2008 he began his path in a twelve-step program, committing to immerse himself in the program and do the necessary hard work to become open, willing and honest in all things. He progressed through the gut-wrenching process the twelve steps outline in order to have a spiritual awakening and find his true self.
That the same year he met Jessica, his future wife and soul mate. They had an immediate connection that developed into a relationship filled with humor, trust, loyalty, communication, and quick-witted banter. Todd and Jessica married on October 29, 2010, in an intimate courthouse ceremony, followed the next summer by a larger family filled celebration of love and commitment. He supported her through the pursuit to further her education, follow her passion and was proud to have a wife that served children and family in their darkest times. On April 10, 2017 Nolan Ryder Wahl, his Daddy’s pride and joy, the child he had yearned for throughout the years, arrived. You will never see a more devoted, playful, proud, engaged father. He took on his fatherly roles, those traditional and not, with eagerness and skill. As Nolan grew, Todd as a father evolved to include Nolan in house remodeling projects, trips to ride in the excavator at his work sites, and rides on their bikes to get gelato. Dreaming of the days when they would ride side by side, keeping the same pace, and at some point Nolan surpassing him to possibly even compete in cycling races himself. Todd wanted to teach him everything he knew and he demonstrated all the traits of an honorable, hard-working, simple man committed to family, work, friends, and of course cycling.
Cycling, something he had been involved in since he was a teenager, became a huge focus of his life. He was also a competitor: active, athletic, and tough. As Todd tended to do with most things in which he was interested, he pursued cycling with passion, commitment, and determination to do his very best. He trained hard, won or placed in local races, and supported the founding and flourishing of the cycling group Cicada. He loved to arrange group rides, when they would meet at 3 Cups coffee to plan that day’s canyon route. He grew to love the group of men he rode with and looked forward to any time they spent together. He relished riding solo, pushing himself to his limit. Occasionally, Todd would be accompanied by his slow-riding wife. Together they enjoyed the sport they both fell in love with. This past year Todd and Jessica decided to tackle a new adventure: buying a 1961 run-down Holladay Midcentury Modern home in need of all the love, sweat, and tears that one could muster. Todd worked day in and day out, spending hours late into the night and throughout the weekends, remodeling the neglected home in order to create a beautifully customized refuge for him and his family. In May, Jess and Todd and Nolan were finally able to move in; it was not yet completed but it was livable. The plan was to continue with the internal and external renovation of their home throughout the next year so that they could enjoy more space for their growing family. Todd and Jessica planned to have a spring baby. That would give him enough time to finish the inside and outside of the house before the arrival of their new baby in May of 2021. Todd was ecstatic to have another child and hoped for a girl. Girl or boy, he would be overjoyed at the opportunity to become a father a second time.
This bright future was interrupted by the tragic events that unfolded on October 9, 2020. We all are heartbroken to have lost such an honorable, devoted, humorous and hard-working man. A man who gave his all to the things and people he loved. He will be greatly missed by those who knew him: from the simple interactions of the coffee shop baristas to his family and friends who feel a gaping hole where a great human being once stood. He is survived by his wife Jessica (Platt) Wahl, his son Nolan Ryder Wahl, and child due May of 2021, parents Richard Dean Wahl and Bette June Wahl, brother Jeff Wahl (Mary), niece Katelyn Wahl, nephew Jadon Wahl, sister-in-law Ashley Platt and nephew (Elijah Ruttinger). Also survived by in-laws Frank and Connie Platt and untold number of friends.
A viewing service is scheduled 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Friday, October 30 at Larkin Sunset Lawn, 2350 East 1300 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84108. The Celebration of Life will be 11:00 am to 2:00 pm on Sunday, November 1 at Riverhorse On Main, 540 Main St, Park City, UT 84060. Masks are required at all events and we ask that you maintain social distance etiquette. Please no children 12 and younger. For those who are unable to attend the celebration of life, the event will be live-streamed from https://youtu.be/Hh5ondUk9JQ
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to help Todd’s wife and children through gf.me/u/y4i9ry or direct venmo to @Jessica-Wahl-3