We're adding a brand new Joe video, Joe in Algeria.
During Joe's years of working at AeroJet, he frequently had to travel around the world to attend different rocket launches. The Algerian launch was one of his favorites, even though he did get into a run-in with the French Foreign Legion over a practical joke.
We hope you enjoy it.
To view the video, please go to Videos of Joe and scroll down to the second video from the bottom of the page.
June 5, 2013
"Joe goes AWOL" is the latest video we're adding to our tribute to Joe.
During World War Two, Joe developed appendicitis while on the battleship Epping Forest. After his onboard appendectomy, he was transferred to a critical care tent hospital on Guadalcanal. Once he recovered, he went AWOL, wandering through the jungle, trying to get back to his ship.
This is a story Joe told us several times over the years. He always indicated he thought it was an important moment in his life, and as we were filming the documentary, he asked that it be included with the documentary materials.
We're happy to add it now.
To view the video, please go to Videos of Joe and scroll down to the third video from the bottom of the page.
July 5, 2011
Phil Meredith, Joe's closest friend at AeroJet, has contributed the first of a multi-part remembrance of Joe. Please go here to read the opening installment.
An 80 minute documentary on Joe's life, told by Joe himself, including rare family footage from the sixties and eighties, is now available for free viewing on this site. Please go here to see the movie (presented in six segments for easier viewing.)
Joe died suddenly in his home on Wednesday, August 18, 2010. He was 89 years old.
He apparently had been working on his computer, perhaps on a new addition to this website, got up for a moment (probably to fix a drink), and halfway to the kitchen, God took him.
He leaves behind his two sisters, Carolyn and Gloria; two daughters, Mary and Ellen; four grandchildren, Amorette, Aaron, Constance and Richard; and a number of great-grandchildren.
The abruptness of his death has been hard on everyone who loved him. If someone has a long, lingering illness, there's time for family and friends to prepare themselves. None of us had that time. But as cruel as the suddenness of Joe's death was on all of us, we have to remember it was God showing great kindness to Joe. He died happy, without pain, doing what he loved most.
After Joe's wife Joan died, in the late nineties, Joe began coming down to our home in Texas during holiday season each year for a two-week stay. We'd do our best to pamper him. After a while, the three of us developed a running joke where we'd refer to our home as the Hotel Noel. The conceit got so elaborate that Mary and I would prepare menus each year for him, from which he could pick and choose the meals he'd want us to serve him. We even took to leaving a small box of chocolates on his pillow when he "checked in", much like a real hotel.
His favorite meal of all was Mary's Sea Scallops, scallops prepared in a delicious cream sauce with fresh basil and plum tomatoes. His favorite breakfast was Mary's version of Eggs Benedict. Each time he visited, we'd eat a lot of food, watch a lot of newly-released DVDs. Weather permitting, which it often does during Texas winters, we'd sit outside in our back yard garden, under the trees at the rear of our property, have a few drinks, and talk for hours. He loved sitting out there. Each morning, over breakfast, he'd ask if the local weather report had decided whether it would be warm enough for us to go out back again in the afternoon. Sometimes, if it were a little chilly, we'd wear jackets pulled around us, but almost every stay there'd be a few days where it was pleasantly warm and sunny out there.
Mary and I would talk to Joe by phone every other Saturday the rest of the year. The Saturday before his death, he was in his usual high spirits. Mary treated him to a subscription to Food Network magazine a couple of years ago. Joe told us that Saturday that while looking at the pictures of food, he had had a fantasy where he would fly down to Dallas that day to surprise us, and order his five favorite Hotel Noel meals to eat all at once. In retrospect, as I type these words, it suddenly strikes me that that almost sounds like a last meal request.
During that same conversation, he asked at one point, How do you make a grilled cheese sandwich? We explained the mechanics to him (he seemed genuinely surprised the procedure involved a skillet.)
The last we ever heard from him was an email he sent us the following Monday, two days before his death. After discussing a few other issues, he ended the email saying, That was the best grilled cheese sandwich I ever ate!
I like to think of that as his final words. Joe was enthusiastic about everything in life. Even grilled cheese sandwiches.
Mary and I promised Joe that after his death, we would keep this website on the Internet. And we will. As is evident even by just a quick perusal, Joe put an enormous amount of love into this site. It deserves to stay.
If anyone would like to contribute a remembrance of Joe, please send it to me, Ralph Robert Moore, at email@example.com. It would be helpful if you put "Joe" in the subject line. Once I have enough comments, I'll create a separate page on this site to show all the contributions. The page will not be as beautifully formatted as Joe's work certainly is, because I never had his talent for website design, but I think he'll understand.
To see different videos of Joe in his final years, please go here.
To see tributes to Joe written by those who knew and loved him, please go here.
--Ralph Robert Moore, Webmaster, August 23, 2010