Joseph DenzelJuly 9, 1954 ~ June 19, 2017 (age 62)
Joseph Meinrad Denzel
Resident of San Jose
Joseph (Joe) Denzel, beloved husband, brother, father, grandfather, and friend, unexpectedly passed away on June 19 from heart failure. He is survived by a large family that loved him dearly including his wife Joyce (Jansen) Denzel, sons Jason, Joseph (Camille), Jeremy (Desta), and Jeffrey, as well as grandchildren Aidan, Andrew, Cora, Emilia, and Myla, and his siblings Jim (Sandy), Mary Hickey (John), John (Robbyn), Michael (Cate), brother-in-law Bill Jansen (Georgene).
Born to James and Mary “Eileen” Denzel on July 9, 1954 in Evansville, IN on (infamously) the “hottest day on record,” Joe spent most of his youth in Tonawanda, NY, located just outside of Buffalo where he spent many hours teaching himself how to drive cars in the driveway at the early age of twelve. He attended Cardinal O’Hara High School where he played basketball and met Joyce Jansen, whom he would later marry in 1975 in Mountain View, CA.
Joe earned his degree in Automotive Engineering from SUNY at Alfred. After college he worked at Pratt & Whitney before beginning a notable 41-year career which included many years at Varian Medical. In his time at Varian as a Regional Service Director, Joe was motivated by a strong desire to help cancer patients receive stable and consistent care. He proudly led a team of service professionals who maintained life-saving medical machines in the western United States.
Beyond work, Joe was known for his love of automobiles, and his unwavering willingness to help anybody buy, sell, evaluate, repair, service, or wash their car. He had a special place in his heart for Corvettes, and took a unique pride in the five that he owned throughout the years. All told, he owned twenty-six cars in his life.
Joe retired in 2015 at which time he worked as a volunteer Blue & Gold Officer helping to recruit Bay Area high school students to the United States Naval Academy. He proudly supported all things Navy, having been inspired by his son Jeffrey’s 2009 commissioning at the USNA.
Joe’s life was defined by his honor and integrity. His family, friends, and professional associates will also remember his charisma, laughter, and willingness to share stories about topics ranging from Navy football to his grandchildren. His kindness and selfless generosity were an inspiration to all that knew him.
A vigil and remembrance of Joe’s life will be held on Monday, June 26 at St. Victor Church at 7 PM at 3108 Sierra Rd in San Jose. The funeral will be held the next day, Tuesday, June 27 at St Victor Church at 10 AM with a reception to follow afterwards at a nearby venue.
In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests donations to benefit St Victor Parish, the students of St Victor School, the Wounded Warrior Project, or the American Cancer Society. Also, wash your car and think fondly of Joe Denzel.