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06/12/12 - NNHS Newsletter - Joe Stevens

Joseph Milburn Stevens, III
(29 Dec 1948 -  09 June 2012)

Newport News High School Class of 1968

Dear Friends and Schoolmates,
 We have another sad edition of the NNHS Newsletter today.      Joe Stevens, Class of 1968, passed away suddenly on Saturday, June 09, 2012 in his home in Newport News at the age of 62.

  From Christine Wilson Starkman ('68) of CA - 07/16/12, 2:55 AM - "    Joe Stevens":

Hi Carol,
I don't know if anyone has let you know about this yet. Our NNHS classmate, Joe Stevens, passed away in June. He and I reconnected on Facebook last year, along with our friend and classmate, Stephany Hall. It was so good hearing from him after all these years. He was still the same lovable, funny, Joe we remembered from high school.
Facebook is a peculiar phenomenon. Just seeing him "out there"-- chatting with him from time to time, "liking" his pictures and comments--brightened my days. I'll miss him.
Hope you are well, nice to see you back.
Christine Wilson Starkman '68
   Oh, Chris, I missed this one; thank you so much for letting me know.  You have my deepest sympathies on the loss of your friend.

From the Daily Press - 06/12/12:

         Joseph M. Stevens, III


    NEWPORT NEWS - Joseph Milburn "Joe" Stevens III, 62, was born Dec. 28, 1948, in Emmetsburg, Iowa. The second son of James and Leona Stevens. He came to Newport News, in 1960, after traveling across the United States, across the world to the Philippines, and back to the U.S. to settle in the Shipyard Apartments in downtown Newport News. He attended Newport News High School and in 1968 he enlisted in the U.S. Army. The Army and his responsibility shaped Joe in a profound way and affirmed his belief that he had so much more to offer in his life.

Joe came into his own in the Army, qualified and earned the rank of E-5 in company F 75th Rangers 25th Infantry Division. He separated from the Army in October 1970, after two tours in Vietnam. Everyone who knew Joe, heard stories of his tour days and knew them almost as well as he did.

In 1971 while attending T.N.C.C. and working part time, he met Martha, the person whom he was meant to share the rest of his life with. They married in 1973, settled down and remained in Newport News.

Joe Stevens
  He began his career as a firefighter with the City of Hampton in 1978 and shortly after enrolled in the Paramedic Program. During this time, he also earned a B.S. degree at Hampton University. He retired from the Hampton Fire Department as a captain in 2003. He enjoyed retirement, caring for family members, close family friends, reading, playing with his 2nd love "Coco," Facebook time, seeing friends, and most of all, spending every second he could with Martha.

The depth of which Joe will be missed is just now starting. He left us so suddenly, so quietly - not at all what we would have expected from him.

Survivors include his wife of 39 years, Martha Ann Little Stevens; and his son, Joey Stevens; in-laws, Gary and Peach Little of Toano, Paul and Karen Little of Midlothian, Amy Little Denson and Chris of Newport News; nieces and nephews; great nieces; a brother, Steve; and sisters, Karen and Becky. He touched, saved, and enriched many lives. Joe will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered by us all.

A funeral service will be held at 3 p.m. Wednesday, June 13, 2012, at W. J. Smith & Son Funeral Home, followed by a time of visitation until 6 p.m.

Please leave online condolences at

Arrangements by W. J. Smith & Son Funeral Home.  View and post condolences on our online guestbook at

Published in the Daily Press from June 12 to June 13, 2012. (There were originally 39 more entries plus three photos in the Guest Book which were unfortunately lost.)

View Guest Book
Guest Book (W. J. Smith & Son Funeral Home)

June 11, 2012, 3:27 PM 
  Joe will be missed by all his Brothers and his extended Ranger Family. I didn't know that Joe had spent his life as a Fireman, but it's no surprise. I can almost picture him running toward the fire while lesser men run away. That's who he was. Joe, I'll see you when I get there, Brother.

Fred Stuckey Co F 75th Rangers 68-70

~  Fred Stuckey, Longview, Texas

June 11, 2012, 8:58 PM   

I served in Company F 75th Rangers from Dec 68 to July 70. with Joe. I had the honor of meeting with him at times in D.C. when we would all get together over Memorial Day weekends. I was sadden to hear of his passing and wish to send my deepest sympathies.

~ Jeffry E. Sandell, Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina

June 12, 2012, 12:01 AM 

At a recent reunion of "F" Company, 75th Rangers, in Nashville, Tennessee, Joe's name came up many times and the stories I heard were great.

I was the first commander of the unit, in 1966, that became "F" Company, 75th Airborne Rangers.

Joe, thank you for your service. You will be missed.

June 12, 2012, 8:14 AM

  Martha, please except my deepest sympathy and regret on the passing of Joe. A man of many stories and one of Hampton's finest medics. Peace be with you.

~ Ronald L. Young, Hampton, Virginia

June 12, 2012, 9:37 AM

One of the last things a man can leave on earth to have his name remembered, is an obituary that tells of his donation to his fellow man while on that earth. Joe Stevens has been able to have one of those obituary's written for him as shown below. His time described below in his obituary shows his unselfishness toward his fellow man. His time spent as a member of an Elite force such as Co. F of the 75th Rangers/25th Infantry Div. will not be forgotten by fellow members as himself. His sudden departure even though not expected, or ever wanted by his friends, and loved ones, will not let any forget the special things and times they will remember him for. My family's thoughts to Joe's family and for them to remember as is written, Time Heals All Wounds. Cecil & Elizabeth Hamm

~ Cecil & Elizabeth Hamm, Texas

June 12, 2012, 3:43 PM

June 12, 2012, 7:46 PM 

Martha. Sad to hear of your loss. Life is never easy and these occasions bear a heavy burden. My prayers are with you and your family.

~ Russ Hobgood, Toano, Virginia


June 14, 2012, 11:49 AM  

I was sorry to hear the news that Joe had passed away. My former husband, Leonard Hearn, and Joe worked together at the Fire Depatment. Joe often came to the medical practice where I myself worked. He was always a kind and caring person with a smile on his face. I heard him speak of his "Martha" many times, always with a kind heart. It is hard to see those that have left us from the "good days" in the Fire Dept. When I told Leonard of his passing, he felt as I did and was very sad. Our condolences to your family. Joe was a good guy who will be fondly missed by those who knew him.

~ Brenda and Leonard Hearn


June 14, 2012

~ Leonard Hearn

June 14, 2012 

Martha, may your many memories fill the whole in your......

~ Susan Quinn

June 14, 2012

Our condolences and prayers go out to you and Joey, Martha.....

~ Terri & Ray Chandonnet

June 14, 2012

Martha, I am so sorry to hear about your painful loss. My.....

~ Shirley Campbell

June 14, 2012

Martha, I just wanted to let you know that you and your.....

~ Shelly Goble

   Our sincerest condolences are extended to Joe's family, friends, and classmates at this difficult time.

   This information is also posted here:

  Y'all take good care of each other!  TYPHOONS FOREVER! We'll Always Have Buckroe!

                          Love to all, Carol





Carol Buckley Harty
7020 Lure Court
Fayetteville, NC 28311-9309

Amazing Grace

Words by John Newton, 1779
(24 July 1725 21 Dec 1807)

 Amazing grace! (how sweet the sound)
That sav'd a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears reliev'd;
How precious did that grace appear,
The hour I first believ'd!

Thro' many dangers, toils and snares,
I have already come;
'Tis grace has brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promis'd good to me,
His word my hope secures;
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.

Yes, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease;
I shall possess, within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow,
The sun forbear to shine;
But God, who call'd me here below,
Will be forever mine.

Bagpipes Version of "Amazing Grace" midi courtesy of - 05/25/08
at the suggestion of Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 05/21/08
Thanks, Dave!

"Amazing Grace" lyrics courtesy of - 03/15/05

Greg Olsen Paintings courtesy of 03/15/05

Animated Army Flag clip art courtesy of - 06/18/03

Firefighters' Emblem courtesy of - 08/17/07

Blackwork Flowers Divider Line clip art courtesy of - 08/12/04

Back to NNHS Newsletters - 2012

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