JOSEPH EARL CHAMBERS JR.
Born March 7, 1931, in Bronx, N.Y., Joseph Chambers passed peacefully on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012, in Key West. Joe was born to Joseph Sr. and Sophianna Chambers and grew up all over the United States, as his dad was in the Navy.
Joe graduated from Hargrave Military Academy in Chatham, Va., in 1950 and then joined the Air Force. Joe then studied at the University of Florida, after which he joined his family stationed in Key West.
Joe met and married the former Jacqueline Schrader. Joe and Jackie's two sons, Mark and David, were born here and they resided most of their married life here in Key West.
Over the years, Joe helped many people get established in their homes and businesses, as he was employed in the financing field. Joe started his career at City Finance and then continued at First Federal in the loan department, for which he was on a business trip in the early 1980s and was hijacked to Cuba, something he would talk about for the remainder of his life.
After First Federal closed, Joe continued his financing career with First State Bank until his retirement in June 2000.
Joe and Jackie moved to DeBary, Fla., and remained until Jackie's passing in 2007. Joe was preceded in death by his parents, Joe Sr. and Sophianna Chambers, his wife, Jacqueline Chambers, his sons, Mark Jay and David Scott Chambers, his sister-in-law Pat Chambers, his nephew Col. Jay W. Chambers Jr., and his niece, Maryann Chambers Tarel.
Joe is survived by his brother, Jay W. Chambers Sr., his sister-in-law Coralie Grizzle, his nephews Christopher (Kristin) Chambers, Michael (Dina) Chambers, Dr. Art (Donna) Grizzle, and his niece Kim Grizzle (Mickey) Malgrat. Joe is also survived by several great-nieces and -nephews and numerous great-great-nieces and -nephews.
The family also wishes to thank Rafael DeTorres, Joe's longtime tenant, friend and caregiver who went above and beyond friendship to help take care of Joe during his extended illness.
Joe's memorial service will be at 3 p.m. Monday, Oct. 1, 2012, at The Basilica of St. Mary Star of the Sea Church. Memorial donations in Joe's name can be made to St. Mary's or to the local SPCA.