Joe Reed, 91

Joe Reed, 91, of Pierre, SD, passed away peacefully on September 19, 2020, at Avera Maryhouse in Pierre.

A family memorial service will be held at 3:00pm on Friday, September 25, 2020, in Griffin Park in Pierre. Inurnment will take place in Savage, MT, at a later date. The memorial service will be broadcast live at the top of Joe’s obituary page at Online condolences may be written at

Joseph Gerald Reed was born on October 26, 1928, to Fred and Mae (Gettis) Reed in Mankato, Minnesota, at St. Joseph Hospital. Joe attended country school as a boy. At age 17, he left home to work on a farm in Erie, ND. He then went to work in a steel mill on the blast furnace in Salt Lake City, Utah.

By this time, he was about to be drafted so he enlisted in the United States Navy in February of 1948. After boot camp, he was sent to Saipan in the Marianna Islands. While stationed there, he took a trip to the island of Tinian, which is where the atomic bomb was flown from on the Enola Gay, effectively ending World War II. While en route to Saipan, the ship Joe was on made a stop at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The Korean War broke out in 1950, which caused Joe to have his time in the service extended. He spent a total of 5 years in the Navy. Joe was stationed for 18 months in the Mariannas before returning to the States.

Joe met Diane White while he was stationed in Bremerton, Washington, in January of 1952. Joe and Diane were married on March 14, 1952, in Seattle, Washington. While still serving in the Navy after their marriage, Joe was stationed in Sassabo, Japan. While stationed in Japan, he served on the USS Graffius AF29 which was a food supply ship. The USS Graffius would make runs to Korea to replenish the 77th Task Force.

Upon returning to the states after an honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy, he went to work for the railroad as a telegrapher. He then went to work for West Coast Telephone Company in Alderwood Manor, Washington, which later became General Telephone Company.

In 1969, Joe transferred with General Telephone Company to Lakeview, Oregon, where he worked as an installer/repairman. After 3 years, Joe was transferred to Bellevue, Washington. In 1973, he quit General Telephone Company and moved his family to Savage, Montana, where he eventually hired on with Mid-Rivers Co-op Phone Company from which he retired in January of 1993. Joe and his wife Diane lived in Savage, Montana, for 37 years before moving to Pierre, SD, to be closer to family.

Joe and Diane have six children: Linda (Richard) Thom of Wasilla, Alaska; Timothy (Sharon) Reed of Lakewood, California; Lorrie (James) Clause of Lakeview, Oregon; Kathleen (Bruce) Zachmeier of Pierre, SD; Zane Reed of Thornton, Colorado; and Andrew (Kristin) Reed of Flower Mound, Texas. They have 14 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

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