Joseph Carpenter
Joseph Carpenter

Obituary of Joseph Dan Carpenter

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Joe Carpenter, 92, passed away Sunday, May 16, 2021. Joe was born in Kadoka, South Dakota, July 26, 1928, to Clair and Joe W. Carpenter. The family later settled on Angle Lake, near Seattle where Joe spent his boyhood swimming and lifeguarding. Joe served with the US Navy in the Pacific during the Korean War and later studied at Edison Technical College, joining the growing field of television broadcasting. Joe and Dee met and married in 1956, and together they raised their children Mike, Scooter, and Ken. They built a home in Kent, and, over the years, crafted and tended beautiful gardens. Joe loved his kids and grandkids and was quick with a smile and a big bear hug. He had a playful sense of humor with a bit of a mischievous side. He loved family most of all, but ice cream came in a close second. Joe spent most of his career in master control at KOMO TV, but he was happiest at home with Dee, to whom he was fiercely devoted, working with her in the garden, plinking away on his computer, or puttering around his shop. He had a gritty ingenuity, able to repair practically anything. He could not abide wastefulness: He practiced an ethos of “reduce, reuse, recycle” decades before the rest of the world realized its importance. Joe and Dee moved to Bellingham in 1998. They were active members of Trinity Lutheran Church where Joe was a trustee, helping with maintenance and repair projects and counting the offerings after services. They volunteered as a team at the Assistance League of Bellingham Thrift Shop where Joe brought new life to the donated small appliances, electronics and watches. In their later years, as Dee became increasingly weakened by lung disease and Joe struggled with slowly progressive dementia, they became their own care team, telling people, “She’s the brains, he’s the brawn.” This allowed them to live independently far longer than expected. Married for 64 years, they remained together until the very end with Dee passing away last October. Joe’s final months were spent at Silverado Memory Care, and the loving attention and care he received there made his brief time without Dee as rich as it possibly could be. And now Joe and Dee are together again, once more tending their beautiful garden. Since it is Spring, there are azaleas to be planted and fuchsia baskets to be hung. Afterwards, it will be time for a heaping bowl of ice cream and a nap in the sun. Joe is survived by his three children, seven grandchildren, two great grandchildren and many church friends. We miss Joe and Dee and honor their enduring love. As they requested, a memorial ice cream social is being planned. Should friends desire, please consider a donation to Whatcom Hospice; the amazing hospice staff provided caring support and comfort to Joe as he travelled the final path of his life journey.
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