The beloved Joseph “Joe” W. Armstrong, 59, peacefully transitioned into Heaven while at home with a ray of sunlight shining down on his face on Friday, April 30, 2021, surrounded by family and friends who loved him and whom he loved.
Joe was born on April 3, 1962, in Springfield, Illinois, to Herschel and Mary Ellen (Brown) Armstrong. Joe was a kind, gentle, and loving soul, always putting others first and himself last. He lived his life to make the lives of others better and happier. His laugh was infectious, his strength was incomparable, his love was never-ending. Joe was a great listener, always filled with wisdom. He said more with a few words than others do with a thousand. Joe’s compassionate and selfless nature will ring through generations to come. His greatest passion and pride was his family, especially his wife and his children, and his faith in Christ.
Joe was our Superhero. For two years, he valiantly and courageously fought brain cancer. Joe didn’t lose his battle. He won the final round meeting his Savior, Jesus. He never once complained and only asked how he could help others during these times. A miracle many times over, his bravery and faith never wavered.
Joe was a renaissance man who had interests in many different areas of life, all in which he was very well-respected. In his younger days, he was a Boy Scout, eventually earning Eagle Scout honors which started his love for outdoors and traveling. Over the years, he was a volunteer at numerous summer camps for children with Cerebral Palsy, donating his time by loving those who did not always receive such care.
Joe went on multiple missions trips across the world. These experiences changed his life and led him to an even deeper understanding of love and compassion towards all things and people. Due to his love for history and his family’s rich lineage, Joe was drawn to and joined multiple local historical clubs and societies. He is well-known for his incredible memory and knowledge of historical events, especially local Springfield history.
Joe was a storm spotter and chaser. For fifteen years, he was a weather co-op for the National Weather Service. His years of experience and love for ham radio and electronics led him to founding the Field Radio group that is now 5,000 members strong worldwide. He is a former President and Vice President of the Sangamon Valley Radio Club.
Joe retired from the State of Illinois, Department of Innovation & Technology (DoIT) after 29 years of public service. He is loved and admired by those who worked with and for him
Joe loved life. He always had fun and never failed to make you laugh when you needed it. He lived every day as if he knew his time would be shorter than most others. All who had the privilege of knowing Joe will recall the joy they felt when around him. He had the best way of making you feel special. All that knew him still feel the light he continues to give.
Joe loved spending time with the love of his life, Barbie, taking walks with his daughter, listening to music with his son, soldering with his son-in-law, reading with his grandson, and showing everyone he met that love is the only answer. Joe lived like we are called to do; to love without question and to serve without reward. He forgave instantly, extended his hand always and gave more than generously. Joe is still blessing the ones he knew and, through others, is blessing the ones they know. He will always be felt, loved, cherished and appreciated. There is no better example than that of Joe Armstrong. He created peace while on this earth, leaving this earth and as long as anyone is still on this earth. If anyone deserves Heaven, it's our Joe. Not a good-bye. Just a "See ya later."
Joe’s last selfless act on earth was donating his brain to further the research and study of Glioblastoma, in hopes of a better quality of life, treatment and cure options for this rare disease.
Joe was a beloved husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, uncle, and friend survived by his wife, Barbie (Young) Armstrong, of almost 30 years; their two children, daughter, Taylor (Christopher) Cook of Summerville, South Carolina, and son, Tyler Armstrong of Springfield, Illinois; one grandson, Elijah Cook of New Berlin, Illinois who affectionately called his Pop, “George”; his parents of Springfield, Illinois; two sisters – Susan (Robert) Fromm and Mary “Kathy” Armstrong, both of Springfield, Illinois; three brothers - Jim Armstrong of Springfield, Illinois, Michael (Mary) Armstrong of Overland, Missouri, and John (Dawn) Armstrong of Chatham, Illinois; and numerous uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces, and cousins.
Joe is preceded in death by his grandparents Oliver and Opal (Carter) Armstrong and August and Bertha (Müenker) Brown; a nephew, Fred Manker, and a niece Hilary Fromm.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Wednesday, May 5, 2021, at Hope Church, 3000 Lenhart Road, Springfield, Illinois. Visitation begins at 10:30 a.m. followed by a service at 12:00 p.m. Pastors Dustin Bramer and Beth Yokley will officiate services. Graveside memorial to be held at a later date.
Memorial contributions can be made to the Glioblastoma Foundation in honor of Joseph “Joe” W. Armstrong.
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