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1953 Joe Alan Jackson 2024

Joe Alan Jackson

March 18, 1953 — January 14, 2024


Passed away Sunday, January 14, 2024. Joe was born on March 18, 1953, to Theodore and Diane (Skelton) Jackson, in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Joe grew up in a large extended family where he was the oldest of his generation and the lead troublemaker. He picked up the guitar at a young age and taught himself to play by ear.  Joe aced his GED and joined the US Army at age 17.  On February 11, 1972, Joe married wife, Shirley. While working and providing for his young children, he earned his first degree in electronics from Kalamazoo Valley Community College.

Joe was an accomplished musician, excelling at the guitar and banjo. He was a member of several bands over the years and his family and friends appreciated hearing him play.

Joe was a voracious reader, and a lover of history. His family recalls observing him always in the middle of a learning project and becoming an expert in each topic before moving on to the next. He was a lifelong learner, earning multiple degrees, culminating with a Master’s Degree in Network Engineering in 2012.

He enjoyed woodworking, creating many of the bookshelves, dressers, clocks and other implements in the family home. He was a constant collector of hobbies, ranging from martial arts to highland dance. But most of all, he loved hunting and exploring the outdoors and was a skilled marksman.  

Joe was a skilled technician in engineering and worked in the automotive industry over the years and ended his career at the Eaton Corporation in North Carolina in 2022. 

He spent the last 12 years in North Carolina and retired last December. During his time there, he enjoyed time in rural Roxboro with his wife. He loved living away from the city and the snow, and being close to his daughter Liz and son-in-law Paul, hunting and exploring the Carolinas with his granddaughter Evie. He was excited to recently move back to Michigan to be close to his other four daughters and 15 grandchildren.

Surviving Joe is his wife, Shirley; mother, Diane Buell; daughters, Heather (Scott) Sonneville, Carrie (Greg) Miller, Elisabeth (Paul) Aube, Andrea Smith, Jo Anna Kelly; and grandchildren, Brooklyn (Aaron) Inman, Mason Sonneville, Audrey (Aaron) Foster, Joseph Miller, Ella Miller, Benjamin Miller, Evangeline Aube, Duane Jackson, Torian Jackson, Quincy Jackson, Ayanna Smith, Lillian Smith, Martellous Smith, II, Levi Smith, William (Amanda) Kelly, Julienne Kelly; and brother, Jerry Jackson. Joe is preceded in death by his father, Theodore Jackson, and sister, Julie Taylor.

Joe is remembered by his loved ones for his quick wit, his intellect, and constant calm.     

Friends and loved ones are welcome to join the family for a Memorial Service on Friday, January 19, 2024, at 1:00 p.m. at New Day Community Church, 3600 Nichols Road, Kalamazoo, MI 49004. Following cremation, Joe will be interred at Fort Custer National Cemetery, which will be scheduled at a later date in the spring.

To order memorial trees in memory of Joe Alan Jackson, please visit our tree store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Friday, January 19, 2024

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

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