On the brisk autumn morning of October 13, 2018, longtime Canton area resident, Joe M. Castle peacefully joined his beloved, Ellen in their heavenly home. Joe lived 92 very blessed years.
Joe was welcomed to the world on July 28, 1926 by his loving parents Robert and Martha (McNeil) Castle in Watauga, N.C. Joe was raised to appreciate all aspects of life. From being a humble boy in N.C. to the kid brother with great ideas in Ohio, to finally becoming a man in Canton, Pa. Following in his father’s footsteps, Joe was an avid outdoorsman. A skilled hunter, trapper and fisherman. Joe and his brother built homemade fisheries, built their own traps and tied their own flies. Joe enjoyed overnight hunting trips with his cousins (especially his double cousin Jean(castle)Hoffman) They would pack horses and head up South Mountain, hunt their food and sleep in a large cave on the side of the mountain and spook each other with stories. His best friend, his dog, King Rex (cocker spaniel) was his faithful companion through his teen years.
Joe learned his carpentry skills from his father. They would work all winter to build a “good fishing” boat. His dad, uncles would take the boys on fishing trips to Canada. They would make sure the boat floated and worked well. Then, when they returned from their grand adventure they would sell the boat. Creating income for the family with a little left over to buy supplies for the next build. Joe often worked with wood making cabinets, redoing homes or just fiddling. He was meticulous, this trait followed through all aspects of Joe’s life.
Joe loved to play basketball, enjoyed all aspects of agriculture, being a part of the CHS FFA, playing on the basketball team, Joe was a well-liked kid at Canton High. He was always willing to lend a helping hand to his classmates. He graduated from Canton High School in 1944.
Joe enlisted in the U.S. Army on July 27,1944, a day before his 18th birthday. His love to fix things landed him a job in the Army Air Corp as an Aerial Engineer. He earned the AAF AIR CREW MEMBER BADGE(Wings). Joe didn’t see war action. However, the peace time action with the 8th SQ 49th Fighter GP experienced horrendous clean up duties, the horrible images remained very vivid in Joe’s mind. Joe served his country well in Japan. He received the Distinguished Unit Badge, good conduct Metal, Army Occupation Medal (Japan)World War II Victory Ribbon, Asiatic Pacific Theater Ribbon. Joe completed his duty to his country and returned home to Canton.
Joe met his” babe” Ellen Williams while working at Prestons. Joe and Ellen were married in Canton on August 27 1950. Joe had the opportunity to own a business near the best fishing stream in Sullivan County. So, Joe and his bookkeeping bride relocated to Forksville, Pa. They loved their time owning the Forksville General store. With Joe’s gentle spirit, patient heart and love for basketball he soon had many school aged boys hanging out at the general store after school. They would play basketball until suppertime and many times, until the sun went down. Joe and Ellen called the fella’s “their Boys” and stayed in touch with many until recently.
Joe was the father of Joseph B. and Debbie S. Castle. Joe loved his children and spent many hours teaching them his love for the outdoors, horses, farming and family. Joe and Ellen moved to Canton after the children were born. Joe worked as a salesman for the remainder of his working days. He found his fit with the well-known W.W. Gleckner and Sons CO. Right up his alley, Horse’s and harness’s. Joe was well known in the industry. He would travel many places to teach other salesmen. His integrity defined who he was leading him to become Vice President of W.W. Gleckner and Sons Co.
When Gleckners closed, Joe bought many of the machines and opened his very own harness and Supply. Joe and Ellen worked together for over 25 years in the harness shop. Joe ‘s meticulous, handy and slow thorough pace followed through in everything he did. Whether it was saddlery, harness making, carpentry, sales, being a grandpa, milking cows, always having to “shake the hay out” for his animals. Joe did life with a very intentful “do it right the first time” “don’t cut corners” approach.
Joe did all things with excellence, being a husband, dad, grandpa, hunting, fishing, raising pigs, having a dairy, raising and showing horses. He loved the Lord with all of his heart and worshipped Him in all things. He felt it important to teach his family the importance of appreciating the outdoors.
Joe is survived by His children Joseph B. (Cindy) Castle and Debbie S. (Daniel) Colton all of Canton. 8 grandchildren, 18 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife Ellen W. Castle, Parents Robert S. and Martha (McNeil) Castle, brother Robert B. Castle, Sisters Marilyn Gray and Elizabeth (Castle) Krise.
Calling hours will be from 6-8 p.m. Friday October 19, 2018 at the North Street Community Church, Canton Pa. and will resume Saturday 9:30 -10:30a.m. October 20,2018 followed by a celebration of Joe’s Life. Interment will follow in the East Canton Cemetery. Professional Services have been entrusted to Morse and Kleese Funeral Home, Inc., Canton. (morseandkleesefuneralhome.com)