Obituary for Joseph R. Zirbes

Joseph (Joe) R. Zirbes, age 91, died Thursday, July 16, 2020, in Pompano Beach, FL of Covid-19.

He was born on April 12, 1929, in Lacrosse, WI to Raymond and Marie (Peikert) Zirbes. He attended Aquinas High School graduating in 1948. In 1950 he joined the US Army proudly serving in the 82nd Airborne, stationed at Fort Bragg, NC, serving until 1953. After the service, he married Jeanette McCauley on August 22, 1953, at St. Johns Catholic Church in Caledonia. They were later divorced. He worked in real estate for many years and went above and beyond to help many people. He later moved to Florida where he continued in real estate plus 30 years as a bridge tender on the Intracoastal Waterway.

Joe always had a positive attitude and a big hello for everyone he met. One of his greatest strengths was empathy and help for anyone facing personal difficulty. He also enjoyed a good game of pool and half a glass of wine. A lifelong friendship with Ray Mosey from Lacrosse and a long-time friendship with Virginia and Bob Hall in Florida were very important to Joe as well.

Surviving are his sons Mike (Terrie) Zirbes of Byron, John (Mary Jo) Zirbes of Victoria, and daughter Mary Zirbes (Sam Gardner) of Rochester. Four grandchildren, Mike (Bobbi), Sarah Bergman (Josh), Kyle and Jaclyn, as well as four great-grandchildren, Harper, Gabe, Luke and Grace, and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, brothers John (Jack), and Jim, and Sisters Patricia and Jean (Robertson), sister-in-law Delores Zirbes, brother-in-law Charles Robertson.

He will be deeply missed, forever loved, and appreciated. A celebration of his life will be held at a future date. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the charity of your choice.

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