Joseph Baldassari (“Jay” as his Italian family called him) passed away unexpectedly on Palm Sunday, April 5, 2020, at his home in Puyallup, Washington.
Joe was born on February 25, 1941 in Tacoma, Washington. He was the youngest of six children born to Italian immigrants Michael and Ernesta Baldassare. Joe proudly served his country in Washington State’s Army National Guard for six years, attaining the rank of First Lieutenant. Joe was always brilliant and well-spoken and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and a Master’s degree in Teaching at the University of Puget Sound. Joe’s greatest love was teaching, and he worked as a teacher with the Tacoma School District for 35 years. He is remembered as being a great mentor to both his students and his colleagues- he made everyone feel that they mattered.
After retiring, Joe loved playing golf, boating, amateur radio operation, and enjoyed all things “Italian” including cooking and culture. He volunteered regularly for 16 years at American Lake Veterans Golf Course and especially enjoyed being in the Golf Shack. Joe’s greatest joy, however, came from spending quality time with friends and family.
Joe will always be remembered as lovable and charismatic. He could be a real character who managed to spread good cheer and humor wherever he went. His departure from this earth has already left an indelible mark on the hearts and minds of those who knew him best, especially his loving wife and best friend of 34 years, Cecilia Baldassari.
Joe is survived by his wife Cecilia, sister Frances Gilletti, sons Louis Baldassari and Dan Korslund, daughter in-law Julie Korslund, seven grandchildren, and numerous in-laws, cousins, nieces, and nephews.
Joe didn’t care much for serious and sad funeral services because he knew that in dying, we live anew with God. What Joe would like us to always remember is the kindness, laughter, and love we all shared with him.
Responses and remarks may be sent to Hill Funeral Home in Puyallup, WA. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to American Lake Veterans Golf Course in Joe’s name.
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