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Joseph M. Tuttle

Cedar Rapids

Joseph M. Tuttle, 84, died on Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018, from complications of ALS. Celebration of Life services will be held at All Saints Catholic Church on Thursday, Dec. 27, at 10 a.m. Visitation will be Wednesday, Dec. 26, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Stewart Baxter Funeral & Memorial Services, 1844 1st Ave. NE, Cedar Rapids.
Tuttle was born on Jan. 16, 1934, and raised on a 120-acre dairy farm west of Monticello, Iowa. His parents were Loretta (Redmond) and Charles E. Tuttle. As a boy, he played baseball and basketball and was active in 4-H, raising and showing many animals at the Jones County Fair. He graduated in 1951 from Sacred Heart High School and worked for the local John Deere dealer until joining the U.S. Navy in 1953.
A Korean War-era veteran, he spent 1953 to 1957 as an aviation electronic technician (AT II) petty officer in a fleet air service squadron supporting anti-submarine patrol training in Puerto Rico and Chincoteague, Va.
He married Audrey (Arp) Tuttle of Walford, Iowa, in 1960 and graduated the following year from the University of Iowa with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.
He spent 34 years as an employee of General Electric. One of his first assignments was supporting a major air defense system upgrade at the U.S. Air Force base near Ramstein, Germany, an assignment that gave him and Audrey the opportunity to travel throughout Europe.
He spent the next 10 years in Erie, Pa., as a quality/system engineering manager for the division that manufactured adjustable speed drives for GE motors. He then worked nearly 20 years with GE Healthcare in Milwaukee, Wis., in new product manufacturing management supporting the introduction of major CT/MRI/ultrasound diagnostic imaging systems. A highlight of his career was making several trips to China in the early 1980s for the development of a low-cost X-ray system for developing countries. He also enjoyed recruiting for GE on college campuses (especially his alma mater) and mentored many young people during his career.
After his retirement from GE in 1995, he worked for several years as a manufacturing consultant in the Milwaukee area. He was also active in the GE Senior/Elfun organization, where he participated in an annual Community Service Day for local schools and volunteered for the high school United States Academic Decathlon program.
He loved all University of Iowa Hawkeye sports and, after moving to Wisconsin, became a Green Bay Packers fan and attended several games a year with friends. Having grown up on a farm, he had many handyman skills and enjoyed working with his hands and maintaining a park-like yard.
He was a loving husband, father and grandfather and served as a father figure for several of his daughters' friends. He loved talking with all kinds of people and had an encyclopedic memory of their stories. Above all, he is remembered for his extraordinary kindness and his willingness to help others. Everyone loved Joe.
Survivors include his wife of 58 years, Audrey; his daughters, Dawn (Matthew) Kluber of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Renee (Wiley) Cockrell of Rocky Mount, N.C., Lynn (Brian) Gunney of Pleasanton, Calif., and Lisa Regan (dear family friend) of Pewaukee, Wis.; eight grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; a sister, Margaret (Ron) Tuisl, of Plainfield, Ill.; a brother, Michael (Maria) of Green Cove Springs, Fla.; and many nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be directed to the ALS Society.
Please share your support and memories with Joe's family on his tribute wall at www.stewartbaxter.com under obituaries.
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