Joseph Andrew Black was born Dec. 7, 1919, in rural Iowa County, near Holbrook, Iowa, the second of eight children to John and Mary (McCarty) Black. He attended country schools in Iowa County and graduated from Williamsburg High School. After high school, he farmed with his father near Holbrook. Joseph served with the U.S. Navy during World War II from 1944 to 1946. Joseph was united in marriage to Madonna Clare Murphy on Oct. 17, 1959, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Parnell. They moved to the family farm near Holbrook where they raised their children. He served on the board of directors at REC from 1968 to 2001 and worked at Amana Refrigeration from 1968 until retiring in 1985 to farm full time with Madonna and son Bob. Joe was a longtime member of St. Michael Church in Holbrook and was a current member of St Mary Catholic Church in Williamsburg. He was a member of the Iburg Poulson VFW Post No. 8797, American Legion and Knights of Columbus. Joseph spent a lifetime being interested in the world. He was interested in and a supportive presence to family and friends. He enjoyed sports, including the Cyclones (and the Hawkeyes when they weren't playing the Cyclones), reading newspapers and discussing politics and government at national, state and local levels. He also will be fondly remembered for his quick wit, humor and gentle wisdom that he shared with those around him. Joseph passed away Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020, at Colonial Manor in Amana at the age of 100.
He is survived by his wife, Madonna (Amana); three loving children, Bob Black of Williamsburg, Julie Black of Chicago and Suzy Black of Edwards, Colo.; and two grandchildren, Adeline and Joseph; two siblings, Sister Mary Jean Margaret (Dorothy) Black, BVM at Mount Carmel in Dubuque and Jerry (Jane) Black of Coralville; and many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and nephews.
Joseph, Madonna and family extend their gratitude to the staff at Colonial Manor and Essence of Life Hospice in Amana.
Funeral Mass will be at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 20, at St. Mary Catholic Church in Williamsburg. Burial will be in St. Michael Cemetery in Holbrook. Visitation will be from 3 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at Powell Funeral Home in Williamsburg. There will be a prayer service at 3 p.m. and a VFW military service at 7 p.m. A memorial fund has been established for Essence of Life Hospice or Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Messages and tributes may be left at www.powellfuneralhomes.com.