June 22, 2013
I was so blessed to call Joe my friend and as I process his passing there are no adequate words to describe what I feel. Our friendship began nearly sixty eight years ago in Marshalltown, IA and we always shared so much; a special bond that I shall always honor.
Joe lived his life to the fullest and with all of his accomplishments he was exceptional, as a human being. His life was lived with love, with compassion, with conscientiousness, with integrity, with understanding, with humor and with joy! He spent his life with a kind heart and always practicing good deeds.
Joe was a man of the world who loved and experienced life in a pure form. Joe never talked about his accomplishments he simply just moved throughout his life with kindness and grace. Everyone loved Joe and in the span of our life long friendship there was never an unkind word about Joe. Joe had friends everywhere and everyone loved him.
His personal values are to be commended, as he gave so much to everyone. Words cannot describe his generosity and his ability To Be! I have a plethora of memories ranging from grade school, junior high, senior high and throughout our adult life.
Without a doubt Paris, France was one of Joe's favorite places in the world and spending time with him in Paris will be forever etched in my memory. To share this magical city with Joe was so rewarding; every step was an orchestration of history and beauty beyond words.
Last September we spent three glorious weeks in the Eternal City of Rome, Italy. Another classmate, Miriam joined us for two weeks and what a guy to put up with two women. He was just amazing! Having previously lived in Rome it was a treat for me to share some off the beaten paths and of course eat our way through the city. We loved experiencing " La Dolce Vita!" Before departing Rome we joined two more friends of Joe's, Barbara and Gwen and we toured the Amalifi Coast, Positano, and Pompeii. Thanks, to Joe I have two wonderful new friends.
On Saturday, March 30th Joe called me at home and he was feeling wonderful and making so many new plans. He suggested I take Zumba Classes, as I love to dance and would be good exercise for me...only Joe! He brought up a trip to Portugal and we had to return to Italy, as there was alot more to see. Our conversation was unusually long and touched on a myriad of subjects. As we ended our conversation he said he had to go on his walk and follow the doctor's advice. I look at our conversation, as a beautiful gift from my wonderful friend.
I shall miss my dear friend more than words could express. I shall be forever grateful for the priviledge of being his friend.
With love and deep respect,
Barbara Gates McIver
Cathedral City, CA