Joseph Wesley “Joe” Ferguson passed away peacefully on July 14 at his home in Grand Junction, Colorado surrounded by his loving family.
Joe was 87 years old. He was born in McAlpine, West Virginia on Oct. 5, 1931. He graduated from Richwood High School in 1949 and attended West Virginia Tech, where he completed four years of college.
On Dec. 24, 1950 he married the love of his life, Wanda Marie “Sugar Babe” Butcher in LaFrank, West Virginia. To their union was born a son, Wesley (Lorinda) Ferguson of Modesto, California; daughters, Joeline (Randy) Zimmerman of Filmore, Utah, and Belinda (Dave) Hurst of Moab, Utah. After Joe finished school, he joined the United States Air Force, where he was stationed at March Air Force Base in California.
Joe served as a surveyor and ended his career as a staff sergeant. After completing four years in the Air Force, Joe, his wife and two small children returned to West Virginia so he could enter the coal mine business with his father.
Joe eventually left the coal mining business to pursue a career as a quality control officer at a missile base in Kansas. He was later transferred to the missile base in Green River, Utah. Joe moved his family to Moab, Utah where he resided for 10 years.
He was a member of the Community Church, where he served as a trustee, a youth leader, and numerous other positions. Joe and Wanda left Moab and moved to Sheridan, Wyoming where Joe accepted a position as a federal mine inspector, overseeing mines in Alaska, North Dakota and South Dakota, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado.
After Joe retired in 1995, he and Wanda moved to Grand Junction to be closer to family. Joe was a jack of all trades. He could build anything and fix anything as long as Wanda was there to supervise. He was an avid reader, loved to work puzzles, and loved anything to do with history.
His father, Harry and his mother, Ellen, and his brothers, James and Fred, preceded him in death. He is survived by his two sisters, Lillian Taylor and Sheila Morris, his brother Carl, Wanda, his loving wife of 69 years; his three children, eight grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren on the way. Joe will always be remembered as a loving husband, father and grandfather. He had an amazing sense of humor that was evident in the funny nicknames he gave everyone. His family will sorely miss him.
There will be a celebration of his life at 11 a.m. July 23 at the Community Church. Donations may be made to Hope West Hospice in Grand Junction, 970-241-2212.