Joe Martin Spangenberg was born August 16, 1961 in Salt Lake City, and passed into the next life on July 16, 2018 at the age of 56. He spent his childhood in Rose Park with his three older brothers and parents, Pete and Jean Spangenberg. Together with his family, Joe enjoyed camping, fishing and hunting; their favorite spots were Redfish Lake, Idaho and Glacier National Park. Following graduation from West High, Joe honorably served his country for five years in the Air National Guard.
Joe married the love of his life, Jana Lee Whitworth, on June 28, 1994. They were later sealed in the Salt Lake Temple.
Joe’s most important work was within the walls of his home. His wife, Jana, and children, Grant, Anna, Logan, and Lincoln were everything to him. Grant and Joe enjoyed cheering on the University of Utah football team. Joe shared his love for animals with his only daughter, Anna. Logan was Joe’s partner in crime at the car wash, as together they worked to clean and maintain the equipment. Lincoln was Joe’s side-kick and eagerly joined him on long drives, work outings, and especially camping trips and fly fishing. Joe’s fifth and sixth children were of the animal variety – Rosie and Truffles. When the passenger seat wasn’t occupied by a child, his constant traveling companions were his “guard dog” silky terriers.
Joe pursued a variety of professional interests, starting as a school custodian at age 13. His talent working with his hands began at Hill Air Force Base, followed by time at Moog, as an airplane mechanic. Several years later, he purchased Fun Supplies where he interacted with students, teachers, and administration in schools all across Utah, often referred to as the “pencil” or “beef jerky” man. He tirelessly managed several other businesses.
Joe never shied away from hard work and gave 110 percent effort to everything he did, always with a smile. He was actively involved in the lives of his children, chaperoning field trips, coaching baseball and basketball, snow skiing, and cooking Sunday dinner on the Traeger grill.
Joe was a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was a dedicated servant and especially treasured working with Webelos Scouts and in the Primary. He was always the first to clear a neighbor’s sidewalk following a snow storm, offer assistance to someone in need, or stand by quietly when someone needed a listening ear. Though a man of few words, Joe demonstrated his strength and testimony through his actions.
Joe is survived by his wife Jana; children, Grant 22, Anna 19, Logan, 17, and Lincoln 14; three brothers, Gary, Craig, and Danny. He will be dearly missed by many others who loved him.
Funeral services will be held Thursday, July 26, 2018.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Joe M. Spangenberg Memorial Fund at any America First Credit Union.