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Joseph J. Oliva

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BASS RIVER Joseph J. Oliva, of Bass River, MA and NorthPort, Florida, formerly of Scituate, MA and Weymouth, MA, died Sunday, August 2nd at 87 years of age. Beloved husband of Agnes "Dunna" Oliva for over 60 years, married on New Years Day 1949. Beloved father of Donna Greco of NorthPort, FL, formerly of Marshfield, MA and father-in-law of Joseph Greco. He was the beloved youngest son of the late Nicholas and Anna Oliva of Weymouth. He was the last surviving sibling, "Juni" as his brothers and sisters called him, was predeceased by siblings: Matthew, Anthony, John, Virginia and Ann "Aunt Peep" Oliva, Mary Giggi, Josephine Luciano, Raphael Mazzaro and Eleanor Owens. He is survived by over 70 nieces, nephews and godchildren. A decorated Veteran of WWII, he enlisted 30 days after Pearl Harbor on January 7, 1942 and served proudly as an "Apprentice Seaman". Watertender First Class in the US Coast Guard, later the US Navy, in the North Atlantic, African and European Theatres of Operation, including the Invasions of Sicily, Italy and France. He often told the story of seeing for the first time with his shipmates the famous movie " Casablanca" in January of 1943 while stationed in Casablanca and how exciting it was for him and his shipmates to be there when President Franklin Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill met in Casablanca for the Summit. He always remarked on how exhilarating it was for all the men to have their Commander in Chief near to them. One evening in 1944 how surprised and pleased his family was to see Joe's picture on the front page of the Quincy Patriot Ledger after an Allied Victory. He served on several vessels including the USS Algonquin and USS Duane and was Honorably Discharged in November 1945. Upon his return from the war Joe became a Weymouth Police Officer, owned and operated his own Lobster Boat and Seafood Store but found his true calling after completing his degree in Civil Engineering from Northeastern University. He was employed as a Civil Engineer for over 40 years for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Joe was one of the engineers involved from the beginning in the design, development and construction of such roadways as Route 95, Route 128, Route 3, Route 6 and Route 495 and served under Governors' Dever, Herter, Furcolo, Volpe (2), Peabody, Sargent, Dukakis and King. A very talented man who derived great pleasure in building and constructing, he lovingly cleared the land and built his families two homes in Scituate and Bass River with his wife "Dunna" by his side. He loved animals and always had a family dog. An avid golfer for over 30 years at the Bass River Golf Course in South Yarmouth, MA and the Lake Venice Golf Club in Venice, FL, he was also a wonderful gardener, a learned reader and was most happy out of doors, walking the beach, biking, building and working on his properties and always being near the sea. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend a Funeral Mass performed by his nephew, Monsignor J. Robert Giggi at St. Pius X Catholic Church, S. Yarmouth at 11 a.m. Friday, August 7 and all are welcome to attend. Friends and relatives are invited to call prior to the Mass from 9:30-10:30 a.m. in the Hallett Funeral Home, 273 Station Ave., S. Yarmouth. Burial will be at the Bourne National Cemetery, Bourne, MA. Donations in loving remembrance would be most appreciated made in his name to the Animal Rescue League of Boston, Cape Cod Branch in Brewster, MA.
Published in The Patriot Ledger on Aug. 5, 2009
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