Joe was born on December 23, 1941, in Charleston, Illinois to Clifford and Virginia Wickham.
He passed away at his home on July 27, 2011. Joe enjoyed fishing all his life, constantly seeking “Old Mo”. He also enjoyed gar-dening, golfing, and barbequeing salmon for family and friends. A good bottle of wine was never far away.
At the tender age of 16, Joe left Arroyo High School, in San Lorenzo, CA and enlisted in the Marine Corp. As a Marine he honored their traditions of timeliness and patriotism.
Joe worked at Duel Vocational Correctional Institute, while completing his educational degrees. He earned his Master of Education degree from CSU Stanislaus.
Joe was proud to be the founding principal of Neil Hafley Elementary School in Manteca, where he served in that role for 19 years. He was a dedicated educator for MUSD since 1972, retiring in 2003. Since then, he has continue to serve students, assuming administrative interim assignments in Patterson, Riverbank, Manteca, and Stanislaus County.
His retirement years were filled with being a devoted husband and father. He not only enjoyed driving Jenny to practices, he never missed a game of golf, soft-ball, or basketball. Jenny’s number one fan could always be found in the stands. He was a very proud and encouraging man, not only for Jenny, but also for his wife, Denise, whom he supported and mentored throughout her career.
Joe leaves behind many who loved him and will miss him. He is survived by his daughter; Jennifer, wife; Denise, sister Mary Shinabargar of Burlington Wisconsin, and daughter Elizabeth.
Private services were held on Saturday, July 30, 2011.
You lived your motto to the end. I would rather be ashes than dust! I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and perma-nent planet. The function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days trying to prolong them. I shall use my time. Jack London’s Credo
Manteca (Calif.) Bulletin
Tuesday, August 2, 2011