Joe Stevens(1932 - 2013)

JOE STEVENS Joseph L. Stevens, 81, passed away peacefully Thursday, March 14, 2013 in Chico after a full and productive life. The Army was Joe's first career. He enlisted at age 17 and retired 22 years later with the rank of Master Sergeant. As a member of the infantry and later the medical corps, Joe served In combat during the wars In Korea and Vietnam, where he was wounded and taken prisoner. For his various military accomplishments, Joe was awarded the Bronze Star, the Soldier's Medal, the Silver Star, and the Distinguished Service Medal. After taking his military retirement, Joe started his second career in civilian medicine. He worked as an LVN and RN, and in 1977, graduated from the UC Davis training program as a Nurse Practitioner. As an NP, he practiced in Davis, Tulare, and Chico. In 1989, with Claire, his second wife of 35 years, Joe retired again. In Chico, Joe was an active member of the Butte County STARS (Sheriff's Team of Active Retired Seniors) program for a number of years, and was well-known for the medical classes he taught for the Red Cross and various public agencies. Outside medicine, his interests were photography, fishing, playing guitar, and reading. He was particularly well-versed in the Civil War, entomology, and the scriptures of different religions. Joe is survived by his wife Claire, nine children from his first marriage (Joseph, Vera, Cathy, Wayne, Mona, Annamae, David, Benney, and Freddy), six step-children (Janet Barletto of Chico, John, Terry, Bill, Rick, and Carol) and a combined total of 36 grandchildren and 23 great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by step-daughters Nancy Stapp of Chico and Mary Jo Johnston. A memorial mass will be held at the Newman Center, 346 Cherry St., Chico on Saturday, March 23 at 10 am. Internment at Glen Oak Memorial Park Cemetery will occur at 11:00 am, followed by a reception at the Newman Center. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Joe's name to the Butte County STARTS program. Condolences can be made online at

Published in Chico Enterprise-Record on Mar. 20, 2013