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Joe Albert Rice, of Carrier Mills

  • Joe A. Rice

    Joe A. Rice

 
Posted on 4/12/2019, 12:33 PM

CARRIER MILLS - Joe Albert Rice, 87, of Carrier Mills passed away on April 1, 2019 at Deaconess Main Hospital in Evansville, Indiana. He was with his wife, Lulu Belle (Murphy) of nearly 60 years who never left his side. They were married June 17, 1960.

Joe was born on September 10, 1931 and grew up in Ledford, IL born to Cecil "Skreeker" and Muriel (Reeder) Rice. He was Baptist by faith.

He attended Harrisburg schools before enlisting in the Army during the Korean War. He was stationed in Alaska with the Corps of Engineers. It was there that Joe learned about diesel mechanics.

He then worked for Caterpillar in East Peoria, IL before marrying his girlfriend of four years, Lulu Belle (Murphy) Rice, and moved back to southern Illinois to raise a family. Joe retired as water superintendent of the Carrier Mills Water District.

Family and friends knew Joe to have a jovial personality, possessing a robust laugh as he loved life and all it had to offer. He was known to have an exceptional work ethic, "working as hard for a dime as you do a dollar" as he use to say.

Joe loved watching the St. Louis Cardinals play and coached them through his television set. He loved watching and reading the news. He loved to talk politics and religion even at the dinner table.

He was a provider by nature, not only providing for his family but helping others who needed help. Joe never saw a class system or believed anyone was better than another. He had a true humanitarian's approach to life.

His battle with cancer was hard fought, and he no longer wished to suffer from the fight.

He is survived by his loving wife, Lulu Belle, a daughter, Lisa (Rice) Hankins, son-in-law Larry Hankins, a son Jonah Rice, and daughter-in-law Megin (Ewing) Rice. He has three grand children, Jacob, Haley, and Connor Rice.

Visitation will be held at Absher-Nicholson Funeral Home in Carrier Mills on Monday, April 15, at 9 a.m., with services starting at 11 a.m. Military rights will follow the service at the funeral home. A bereavement dinner will be held at New Salem Church in Carrier Mills after services. No cemetery burial will take place as Joe wished to be cremated. A burial will take place in the future.

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Rice-Murphy Scholarship Fund already established at Southeastern Illinois College or the Veterans Medical Center in Marion, IL in memory of Joe Albert Rice.