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  1. Joe is an amazing person through and through, anyone that has ever crossed paths with him would agree the beauty inside him was simply angelic. Worldwide people mourn the loss of this incredible man. We are the lucky ones to have known you Joe.

  2. Joe had this admirable zest for life that people couldn’t help but be in awe of. He’s what I would consider to be the very definition of a good person. He had a way of making everyone he met feel special, appreciated and loved. I will forever miss him and be thankful for the impact he’s made on mine and my daughter’s life.

  3. God is Love

    Part of Mary’s tribute to Joe…

    “Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1 John 4:11

    First of all Joe… this isn’t fair! You made a point of noting you kept my high school yearbook a full year to make your inscription to me… too many memories to consolidate and what was that only 17 years of knowing each other? Now here I am trying to summarize 56 years of AMAZING friendship in just a few days.

    Ofus Jofus… where would we be without having known you?

    I’m so grateful for your life… for your friendship!

    Joe you were key in leading me to understand exactly how much Jesus loves me! Your life on this side of eternity shines God’s Love to everyone you have ever met.

    You sincerely cared for your family, friends and all the people you served with excellence.

    One of my favorite Joe moments is the NYC Joe “urban cowboy” who led me and my brothers Mike and John through a whirlwind High School tour of Manhattan. You had your cowboy hat and boots and ran us through seemingly every possible place. You were able to walk in the stage door to get us autographs of…??? I want to say Sandy Duncan??? I really don’t remember who… I just remember us all as part of the big crowd outside the stage door and you confidently stepping inside and coming out with autographed playbills. We had gone to see “The Real Santa” at Macys, and as we were rushing back to catch our train someone in the elevator said “you won’t catch a train tonight, there was a bomb threat!” We went and asked an officer on the street who confirmed the information. We went to a payphone… which happened to be THE payphone the threat was made from AND near THE garbage can money was to be left in. While you were finishing up your call to your Dad to pick us up at the Empire State Building, the tv reporters came shining camera lights on you hanging up then kicking over the garbage can and filming the spilled contents… we were all “Joe, let’s go!” and you were all “I want to get my boots on TV” so you stepped toward the spilled garbage and stood nearby until crew stopped filming. Never a dull moment with you Joe! ❤️

    We were thrilled to have you and your parents sit with us at “the newlyweds” wedding you all mean so very much to us!

  4. You came to the roller-rink to meet Bill. I wouldn’t give any strange boys my phone number… but I promised to meet Bill there the next week. All Bill’s friends were teasing him as we entered that I had shown up with another guy. You were there from the very beginning to give your approval and you have remained such a dear friend to Bill and me always!!!
    Our kids call you their “Bop-oop” Joe. You got that nickname because of that ridiculous car locking sound you’d learned to make when “everybody” started to have that electronic car lock and alarm. Nothing we drove at that time had that technology, but you always knew how to make us all appear quite caught up on whatever the latest trends were.
    You took your dream date to the Prom, and I took mine! You, Debbie, Lisa, Bill and I had a fun night and your awesome parents hosted such a fancy breakfast to end the night.
    You were there for our wedding as one of Billy’s groomsmen. You’ve been there always for us. You made sure to show me all of the things you loved about NYC before we moved away. There’s a photo you sent of me next to some street mosaics artists had brightened up the city with. You showed me Tudor City as a place you aspired to live… “someday.”
    After we’d moved away MLK became “Bop-oop Joe” Weekend. We’d get together and once the kids embarked on adulthood we kept that “our” weekend and you’d always invite us on so many of your world travels… we kept declining because we had a hard time keeping up. Joe, you’ve crammed the very full lives of at least seven very active men into your very short life on this side of eternity!!!! Despite your ridiculously busy work life we were always thrilled you were always ready to meet us a million different times and places when we had plans to go back to NY.

  5. Busy Bee Cakes

    Joe, you were always my Very Hungry Caterpillar, and My World Traveling Cabbage Patch Kid!

    You had the remarkable ability to ENJOY sooooo many sweets.

    How many times you would stop by a bakery picking up 3 or four of your latest bakery obsessions fully intending to share and arrive apologizing that only one-half of one actually made it because you couldn’t resist. LOL. We’d always reassure you the diabetics couldn’t enjoy more than a sliver anyway.

    Hey… wait a minute… how dare you leave this side of eternity… I know you really ARE in a FAR BETTER PLACE!!!

    You could have at least left me your metabolism!!!

    See you on the other side. Give Jimmy a kiss from us all!

    What a Friend we have in Jesus!

    “Taste and see that The Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him.” Psalm 34:8

  6. Joe,
    You were someone who always made others feel so special. The world is at a loss without you in it.
    Rest In Peace…
    Nancy and David Preisler

  7. Joseph, we are so very saddened to have learned of your passing. You are such a kind, compassionate, genuine, gentle human being. We met you years ago at Carrabba’s when we were lucky enough to have you as our waiter. You always took so much pride in your job. We always requested you as our waiter because of your kindness, professionalism, sense of humor, and your loving nature. Our daughter has known you since she was a small child. She called you “Joe Fish” because she couldn’t pronounce your name. Well, that name stuck and we continued to call you “Joe Fish.” You always took such a genuine interest in our family and enjoyed listening to what was happening in our lives. Our daughter always looked for you when we would enter the restaurant. When she would see you, she’d say, “Mommy, there’s Joseph. Say hi. “ We always loved seeing you at Carrabba’s. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to set foot in there again. Thank you for being a part of our lives. You were always so positive. I will always smile, but with a pain in my heart when I think of you. Thank you for enriching my life. You are really one of the great ones. I just can’t believe this. We will truly miss you. I will pray for you. Love, the Foxes

  8. Our Dear Joe;
    It cannot be true; yet it is…
    We want to start by offering our heart-felt condolences to Mr. & Mrs. Giargiana & his sister Kim.
    Joe will always remain the friend we refer to as the nicest, sweetest & most selfless person we know.
    To Heidi Y., we are sorry for the loss of your childhood friend. May your lifetime of memories help you heal more quickly.
    To Liz K., thank you for introducing us to Joe and may fond memories bring more smiles than tears.
    Joe made everyone feel special. He was the Energizer Bunny on 5 cups of coffee & he shared his excitement for life with us all. Joe always personalized an agenda for the person he was seeing complete with schedules, times, magazine clippings, fun facts and one had better be able to keep up with him. Lol. We will miss him dearly.
    We are happy to be able to call Joe our friend. We are happy that he is re-united with his brother James and other friends and family that have passed.
    And we pity St. Peter if he tells Joe there are no pastry & coffee shops in Heaven.
    We love you Joe.

  9. Joe, I miss you so much, you had such a zest for living, taking literally a big bite out of the big apple, then later the entire world.
    You inspired me to jump in, go forward and most of all to enjoy. Seeing the world through your eyes brought me so much joy. You brought joy to everyone you met. You will be profoundly missed.

  10. We have been truly blessed to have remained neighbors and family to each other for the past 56 years.
    Joseph was a unique and beautiful person; always caring, thoughtful, going above and beyond spreading happiness and joy with a marvelous sense of humor that always made everyone appreciate the wonderful person he was to each and everyone of us.
    Being restricted , at this time, from the human touch and the usual religious rituals and words of consolation and hugs; is an added challenge and loss especially to his family and everyone.
    Our children all grew up together and still keep in touch with each other. My oldest daughter Mary was in the same math class as Joseph in high school and shared a memory. She and Joseph were talking during class, the teacher said; ” Mary and Joseph” and Joseph would whisper in his timely sense of humor;”and baby Jesus”
    Joseph was a light that shone brightly even on rainy days; he will continue to shine through the moon and the stars giving us the hope , love and peace of Jesus ; helping us to continue to trust in the Lord.
    You will continue in our thoughts and prayers
    God bless everyone
    Joan Meehan

  11. Dear Jen and Joe
    We are so sorry to hear about the passing of JP. Please accept our condolences and we hope you can find some peace in this difficult time.
    Sending love,
    Candace

  12. Joe,
    We miss you beyond words. Your love, kindness, enthusiasm, and zest for life blessed our lives immensely. We want more time with you. We want to share more pizza and pastries and hot chocolate. We want to race around the city discovering breathtaking architecture and hearing the fascinating backstories behind it. We want to sneak into more exclusive NYC spots and pretend that we belong. We want to hear more zany stories about fighting with Andy Warhol over a Farrah Fawcett rug at a flea market, discovering Mariah Carey singing in church, and fighting off the dogs along your postal route. We want to carry out our plans for a shopping-themed visit, a Broadway-themed visit, and camp-out like sardines in Tudor City with you. We want you to teach us what you loved about Portugal and join us on a trip there. We want to spend more time with you and observe and learn how it is that you make people feel so special and important and loved. We will channel our inner Joe and live each day to the fullest in your memory. We love you.
    Vince, Lauren, Lia, Callie & Luke

  13. Joe, you were such a bright light in this world. Your kindness and generosity of spirit were inspiring. So many memories of your plans for trips to explore the world, sharing tidbits about architecture, deep dives into culture, all the times you extended your hospitality to me and Jon at your gem of an apartment in Tudor City, and the laughter, the sparkle in your eyes – I will miss you, but I am so very glad that I knew you and can carry your spirit with me. I will keep you in my heart as will so many people whose lives you touched and made better.

  14. It’s really amazing to read all these tributes to Joe. Every one I read, I’m thinking to myself that yes, that is so much like the Joe I know. Especially everyone’s stories about Joe’s “NYC insider tips.” I remember a NYC trip years ago, with my sister Mary and brother John, when we were in high school, Joe said we could meet the stars from a Broadway show if we waited by the stage door exits, and Joe was right. Joe grew up across the street from us, and through the years, Joe was always over at our house, especially when there were family in town. Joe would be at our door, often it seemed, just as we were sitting to have our dinner. When that happened, we would joke that the flag must have went up to alert him, but Joe was always welcome at any time. Joe and I went to the same schools, and we looked similar to the point where he would sometimes tell me that one of his teachers said, “Oh, I had your brother in my class last year.” It’s difficult now with the social distancing that we won’t have the experience of meeting each other in person at a funeral, but I think that the remembrances here are giving everyone an opportunity to take our time to read them, to take a break if we need to, and to look at the photos, and to take more in than we might otherwise be able to take in at a regular funeral.

  15. Diane Bancheri
    My deepest sympathies to Joe’s family. We met at the Reilly’s meetings back in the 80’s and used to do nursing home ministry at Southaven and have so many memories of all the crazy ideas he used to come up with to minister to the residents. He was always positive and encouraging and will be greatly missed.

  16. Joe was full of life, compassionate, selfless, generous, and meticulous to a T. None of us will meet another person quite like him. I can truly say my life is better because of him. His positive outlook and excitement for life was obvious and contagious. One of the best parts of Joe is that he always made people feel noticed and loved. He had a way of making every encounter and conversation a special one. I’m beyond thankful for the time I’ve spent with Joe traveling and visiting many sights. Those are memories I will never forget. My life is better having known him. I can only imagine the laughter in heaven right now!

  17. So sorry to hear that Joe passed away, but so glad to see that the friend I knew well so many years ago continued to affect the lives of others like he did mine. Joe and I met through a youth meeting when I was a senior in High School. We were close friends all through my 20’s. All of the memories I have of him bring a smile to my face. He was such a good friend. He was always there when you needed him, comforting, fun, etc. Here are a couple of memories I’ll never forget. One time 3 of us (Joe, Van, and I) camped in a 2 man tent at Smith’s Point. It was a tight fit, but we didn’t care. We were a couple of friends just enjoying each other and the beautiful ocean/beach. So Much fun. Joe took me to my first Opera. We bought standing room only seats, Joe was always thrifty and knew they’d move us up to better seats partway through. At intermission, we were lead to 2nd row orchestra seats. It was amazing! The thing I remember most about Joe is how easy he was to be friends with. He was so accepting. You could just be yourself with him. He never judged, was always honest, always understanding and encouraging. I will miss him.

    An Old Friend,
    Lisa Kutil Mistretta

  18. Frank & Marie Giargiana

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Joe & Gen, on this very sad day.

    Love

  19. I don’t need to remind anyone of just how special a person Joe was but that’s what he was, a special person! He will be missed greatly, practicing French with him and discussing where our travel plans would take us next. He’s given me great life advice and small gifts to know he was thinking of me while he was out traveling, all of which I will continue to hold closely in his memory.
    Deepest condolences to his family.
    The Clausons

  20. Heaven has gained one of its greatest angels 💙There is so much to be said about Joe, it’s incredible how many lives he’s touched. Whether Joe knew you for 10 minutes or 10 years he made you feel so special and loved. He also was so free spirited, breaking out in song whether frustrated or happy. He lived every moment to the fullest with a smile on his face that always lit up the room. Our deepest condolences and prayers are with Mr. and Mrs. Giargiana and his sister.

    Love,

    Kayla Kraker & Alex Serina

  21. This is the poem that was read during Joe’s service at the funeral home. It was written by Irish poet, John O’Donohue, who died in his sleep at 52 years of age. We find Joe in its words.

    On the Death of the Beloved

    Though we need to weep your loss,
    You dwell in that safe place in our hearts,
    Where no storm or night or pain can reach you.

    Your love was like the dawn
    Brightening over our lives
    Awakening beneath the dark
    A further adventure of colour.

    The sound of your voice
    Found for us
    A new music
    That brightened everything.

    Whatever you enfolded in your gaze
    Quickened in the joy of its being;
    You placed smiles like flowers
    On the altar of the heart.
    Your mind always sparkled
    With wonder at things.

    Though your days here were brief,
    Your spirit was live, awake, complete.

    We look towards each other no longer
    From the old distance of our names;
    Now you dwell inside the rhythm of breath,
    As close to us as we are to ourselves.

    Though we cannot see you with outward eyes,
    We know our soul’s gaze is upon your face,
    Smiling back at us from within everything
    To which we bring our best refinement.

    Let us not look for you only in memory,
    Where we would grow lonely without you.
    You would want us to find you in presence,
    Beside us when beauty brightens,
    When kindness glows
    And music echoes eternal tones.

    When orchids brighten the earth,
    Darkest winter has turned to spring;
    May this dark grief flower with hope
    In every heart that loves you.

    May you continue to inspire us:
    To enter each day with a generous heart.
    To serve the call of courage and love
    Until we see your beautiful face again
    In that land where there is no more separation,
    Where all tears will be wiped from our mind,
    And where we will never lose you again.

  22. Dear Jen and Joe,

    Please know how incredibly sorry we are and that our prayers are with you and your family. Rest in Peace Joe, our prayers are with you always…..

    Love,
    Andy & Laura

  23. “We’re a thousand miles from comfort, we have traveled land and sea
    But as long as you are with me, there’s no place I’d rather be
    I would wait forever, exalted in the scene
    As long as I am with you, my heart continues to beat…no place I’d rather be.” Rather Be by Clean Bandit

    These are Lyrics from the last concert I went with Joe aka Bop boo Joe as I call him it’s a long story but has to do with a sound he used to make for us when I was a little kid imitating the car alarms. He always made us laugh and smile! I like to think of Heaven as no place I would rather be and although we all miss Joe (Bop Boo Joe) I’d like to think of him up there singing and dancing that it’s no place he would rather be as well!:)

    I’m so blessed to have had Joe in my life and he will be greatly missed! He was so full of Life, Love and Joy. He knew all the best Music, all the best places to eat and all the best people. He made my life and many others more colorful and bright! My family and I Love him very much and can’t wait to see him in Heaven again and hear about all about the awesome Music, Food and people! 🙂

    After all I’ve heard our fathers house in heaven is “a big big house With lots and lots a room A big big table With lots and lots of food” -Audio Adrenaline lol another song from childhood about heaven.

    I’ll end this with the last text he sent me because it seems fitting!

    “Xoxo
    More soon”

    Until we meet again Bop Boo Joe!:)

    Love Always!

    Stephanie

  24. Wow Joe, is really gone.

    What words can I write about someone who has been such a good friend?

    I’ve known Joe for about for 39 years. He’s always been a man who is the embodiment of all that is what a Christ Follower should be and more. His Spirit would shine through his kindness, his smile would light up a room. His personality so warm and inviting it would draw you in with just a few words. Joe could start a conversation with anyone. In a matter of minutes you would feel like you were friends of a lifetime.

    Joe lived life to the fullest with joy and happiness. He prioritized his friends, spending time with them as much as he possibly could even while working Post office mega hours and being a perfect waiter at Carrabba’s.

    I am a truly blessed man to have the chance to call Joe, my friend.

  25. Our deepest condolences to Joe’s friends and family. We only knew Joe through our 15 years of coming to Carrabba’s, but we really feel he had become a friend, a friendly face to greet us. He will be truly missed! The world lost one of the good ones!

  26. I worked with Joey 23 years I started at 41 but he was always on same page family travel and most of all wanted everyone to feel the nice day he was my friend and I never make friends but he made it for us always concerned showed that patience is a virtue and my seven grandkids were taught it by me as I was by my friend thank you family aunt sister mom for always giving him the love he deserved sorry I talk a lot mostly mumble but Joey my friend always gave me hope I know one day we will meet somewhere special well traveled please let me know if you need anything cause he always was there for me I know he will continue to see the nice days and say what a beautiful day!!❤️🙏🌈🌎🗽🎟🏖🎭 love you , mary

  27. I met Joseph at Carrabba’s, since a group of us from our woodworking club became regulars, always asking to be at Joseph’s table. We also came back with our families because of him; I was happy to introduce my son Eric to him when we came for dinner one night. We considered Joseph to be an honorary member, giving him one of our T shirts, and he was kind enough to come to our annual woodworking shows. Ever generous, he figured we would be hungry so he brought a bag of apples.

    Joseph, you were a kind person, always pleasant to be around, you never had a bad word to say about anyone, and it was a joy to have known you.

  28. It is with shock and sadness, to hear about the passing of our friend and waiter I called Joseph. I too was part of the Woodworkers
    Club monthly dinner. I called him Joseph, not to be confused with our club member Joe. I’m sorry I’m only finding out about his passing now. With social distancing we were unable to have our usual monthly meetings. So we were unable to meet at Carrabba’s
    Joe was always there with your drinks even before you ordered them. He would even bring you an extra just to make sure. He would always go out of his way to serve us. We are definitely in a small world. Several years ago we attended our friend Barbara’s,fathers funeral. While walking into the ceremony who walks in but Joe. Hey Joe what are you doing here. Turns out he was friends with Barbara’s brother. So you never know. He will definitely be truly missed. As a brother in the Lord, all my thoughts and prayers go out to Joe and his family. He Now sit’s on the other side of the dinner table to be served.

  29. We have only now paid tribute to our good friend Joe, whom we met through his volunteer work at Open House New York and over the course of nearly twenty years have become fast friends. Much has been said about about Joe the ‘unicorn’ volunteer, who could pretty much do anything you asked of him, anywhere at any time.

    Of course, his innate ability to care for others and his love of New York City made him the ideal choice to be a part of the inaugural Volunteer Council for Open House New York, particularly in the early years of the organisation. As others may note, Joe was the consummate New Yorker – even referring to himself as Tudor City Joe (in reference to his NYC abode) as his surname was so hard to pronounce for so many.

    But more important, for us, is that over the years, Joe became a FOREVER friend – with time and distance seeming to bind our friendship tighter rather than becoming barriers. The Joe who loved great design and travel, who was always up for some harebrained adventure…that’s the person whom we would most like to share with those who loved and knew him.

    Joe was the kind of guy that when he committed to something he was ALL IN. Not only did he go to the 15th anniversary of Open House London with me and Jessica Mak as the OHNY representatives …he managed to visit nearly 18 sites that weekend, a pretty incredible feat for a local, let alone a Yank who was relying on a printed version of the A to Zed London map.

    Aside from Open House, we bonded over our love of great design objects. Joe owned a number of iconic designer chairs from Gerrit Rietveld’s Zigzag Chair to Philippe Starck’s iconic Louis XV Ghost chair – all crammed into his tiny, home away from home pied-à-terre in the Tudor City complex, which he would proudly note had a view of the architects Oscar Niemeyer’s and Le Corbusier’s famous United Nations secretariat building. In his Long Island house, he stored something like 2,000 pieces of ceramics, and knew every single piece and its maker!

    And yet, despite having a keen eye for beautiful things, Joe was SO down to earth. He would gleefully leave $1 packets of a ‘cake in a cup’ for guests lucky enough to have a sleepover in his New York loft. And if you were lucky enough to visit him at his beloved Northport Long Island home, the highlight was not his erudite tour of the village’s terrific vernacular architecture, but it was eating his favourite morning breakfast meal from the well-known, local Copenhagen Bakery, where of course everyone knew his name.

    We can go on and on about gracious, well-mannered and generous Joe. But we want to end with his extreme love of travel. Joe was one of our first friends to visit us in our new lives in Australia, and he was basically a walking, talking billboard for Open House Worldwide. He travelled like it was an extreme sport and with the zeal of a missionary for Mark Twain’s axiom: Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness…

    If one person was single handedly breaking down misconceptions about the Ugly American Abroad it was Joe.

    To quote from an email from him last year: ‘ I LOVE the open house experience, obviously. This year I’ve attended Open House weekends in San Diego, Athens, Greece, Porto [in] Portugal, and Madrid in this September, Dublin in October.

    (other travel this year included Palm Springs California Miami, Detroit ,Jackson Hole Wyoming ,and Salt Lake City… forth coming Shanghai, Taipei, Belfast, and in November it looks like three days in Paris France. ). UNQUOTE

    BUT all who were lucky to meet Joe, knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that his absolute, favourite city was and always will be the Big Apple.

    It makes our hearts burst with love and gratitude to know that so much of Joe has been spread across this world…

    There really is no solace when we lose someone as magical as Joe – our loss is particularly made even more tragic by these challenging times. He still had so many adventurers and places to explore with friends and family ….,between us, we always had semi-serious ,future plans to create a new Open House somewhere, at some future date, in some other city.

    As a small comfort for ourselves, Joe’s Open House family, all his friends around the world, and particularly his sister, father and mother is this:

    We can guarantee that St Peter at the Pearly Gates, NOW has a new angel assisting him with heavenly arrivals. Can’t you just see him? Angel Joe… with a big, welcoming grin, gently ushering people through as he says, ‘Welcome to Heaven. How can I help you, and can I show you around?

    God Bless you Joe. We will miss. you. forever. Joy and Alan

  30. I Think that only you and I can appreciate the procrastination of me finally sending this to you . You were a really good friend and I pray for you every day that you’re finally home with Jimmy. The world lost a really good guy when you passed away Joey, Thanks for being such a good friend . i’ll see you again someday.

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