In Memory

Joe Rousso

Joe RoussoWritten by Joe's daughter Alexandra:

My dad, commonly know amongst myself and my friends as Papa Joe, passed away peacefully while surrounded by family yesterday. He was the greatest dad in the world who taught me almost everything I know, including how to ride a bike and throw a ball. He never missed a horse show or a softball game. I remember my high school softball team awarded him #1 fan of the season one year. That was the kind of guy my dad was; a bright light who was always smiling and everyone wanted to be around him. He was a character and the funniest guy I know, always cracking jokes and making us all laugh, sometimes uncontrollably. He enjoyed making people laugh and telling stories. I’m going to miss his stories. And I’m going to miss his laugh. To know my dad was to love him.
He took our family on several trips to Europe, (our home in Greece especially) and gave me and my sister the gift of travel and exposure to the world. He encouraged us to be adventurous. He would have me and my sister try all different types of exotic foods. I’ll never forget riding in the back of my Dad’s estate appraisal business U-Haul that we nicknamed “Big White Boy”. One time he and my aunt drove my sister, cousins and me down to Disney Land while us kids camped out in the back. He entertained weekly “The O.C.” nights at our house with my friends.
My dad loved to sing. We would drive in the car blasting tunes and singing at the top of our lungs while laughing in between chorus lines all the time. He shared his love of professional sports and took us to countless 49er and Giants games. Our thing was to tell each other, “I love you 49”. He was so excited for me to pursue a career in real estate like he did. I know he’ll be watching over me when I close every deal. I can imagine him saying, “way to go Magillo!”. One of the last voicemails he left me was about how he thinks I should stylize my sign when, and I quote, “Get the big time”. He was my idol, teacher, confidant, mentor, and best friend.
Dad loved unconditionally with all his heart and in turn he was also loved by so many. That really showed with outpouring of calls and texts he received cheering him on throughout his final days with us. I have no words to describe my gratitude for the love and support I received from my family and friends during this sad time. I’m going to miss him so much every day and I can’t wait to see him in my dreams. I love you 49, Dad. Until we meet again 🤍🕊

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01/09/22 06:48 PM #13    

Vicky Tammaro Tammaro (Yakobovich)

I am so sorry to hear about this. My condolences to Becky, Marissa and Alex. Joe and I both reside on the Monterey Peninsula dating myself but have lived here for 43 years and unfortunately our paths did not cross that often. Joe's cousin Vilia just sold my daughter her first home. 
joe was mentored by my Father Malcolm Kohn to learn the nuisances of the real estate world. 
please rip joe 



01/10/22 01:22 AM #14    

Lynna Hilts

I am sadden to hear if Joe's passing. What a moving tribute by his daughter. Joe was always so welcoming to everyone and I always appreciated his inclusive nature. He always seemed to have a big smile on his face. I always looked forward to his postings in FB. My deepest sympathies to Joe's family and to his many friends. 

01/10/22 11:24 AM #15    

Pete Murphy

OK I've got to admit, this one hit me pretty hard. The tribute by Alexandra was beautiful and shows what a wonderful dad Joe must have been.  I was so fortunate to reconnect with him at our 40th back in 2011. For some odd reason that only teenagers know, he always called me Murf-shit so I had to respond in kind with his (similarly) hyphenated last name. Then there was this instant bond, as if no time had passed at all. We talked about all the crazy times in that big green station wagon that he'd drive around. So after a long conversation,  he said, "Murf, it's all about the memories man, it's all about the memories".  The guy was bigger than life. 

Love you Joe!

01/10/22 12:42 PM #16    

Patricia Ryan

I heard about Joe's passing earlier this week just by chance from Rick Bocci, who I had texted to wish a happy birthday. I was so sad to hear, We both commented that "he was such a good guy.". His daughter's comments were so warm and loving, as obviously Joe was and continued to be his entire life. I know what it's like to have a father whose personality and presence is "larger than life" to his family. Their passing makes it even harder to fill the hole, but the memories are greater as well. It was also particularly great to read Dave Russell's story about Joe getting his small gang of high school friends together recently to relive some of their Mills High memories, and fun to see the picture he posted from that reunion. We at Mills Class of 1971 we're lucky to have a very special group of extraordinary classmates. Joe was one of the best and most memorable for me.  May he Rest In Peace, and may his family be comforted by the fact that many people loved him💔💔☮️.<>>


01/10/22 02:24 PM #17    

Rick Browne

As I remember joe with lots of great energy during the events in the Gymnasium & as one of the pictures in the yearbook with Betsy Benson states:  Joe was definitely "Most Spirited" 
I see in the background of the picture of Joe while sitting in kitchen, a for sale sign in front the house across the way how appropriate... 

God bless , 

50 years has flown by in a blink of an eye...



01/10/22 06:01 PM #18    

Sharon Fong (Couture)

I am so sorry to hear about Joe's passing. There are so many fond , fun memories with lots of laughter. Loved Alex's tribute which showed what a great dad Joe was . My sincerest condolences to the family. ❤️❤️

01/10/22 10:13 PM #19    

Bonnie Stewart

I was so sad to hear about Joe's passing... not because we had a close relationship (then, or now), but because he was always "one of the good guys".  I think Joe said what he meant and meant what he said.  He was larger than life, yet accessible.  You were always part of his circle, when in his company.

His daughter's reflections on his life, give insight that his relationships, spirit and charisma continued and defined him throughout his life.  Her pride and love for Joe, and the outpouring from longtime friends and acquaintances  are strong indicators of the man he was and the life he lead.  The perfect legacy from a life well-lived!  Well done, Joe!  RIP 💕

01/10/22 11:26 PM #20    

Gregg Harris

I just called him Rousso. We had great times together. His daughter wrote a wonderful piece about her Dad. 

RIP my friend.  

Please all stay safe.   Aloha and A Hui Hoe


01/12/22 01:29 AM #21    

Suzi Snyder (Hertel)

What heartfelt and beautiful memories that Alex shared about her Dad.  i remember the same always ready to laugh more, do more, be more, one of a kind person that Joe clearly was to so many people.  Such a loss too soon!  My deepest condolences to his family.  

01/25/22 04:04 PM #22    

Betsy Benson (Holquist)

Thank you Alexandra for sharing this beautiful tribute of your dad. So many in our class have priceless memories of Joe. In that "most spirited" picture he teased me about breaking his back. We had some wild times with Joe, Dante and Dave cheerleading together...more fun than cheering!

Some years after graduation Steve and I were at Tahoe with our young family. Enjoying the beach we heard that voice, behind us, that could only be Joe's. He and his family along with Dante and his wife were behind us.We had a great visit that day. Good times remembered.

He was one of the good guys.

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