CHAMPION, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Joseph J. Kirkwood, 88, of Champion, entered peacefully into eternal life on Tuesday, April 12, 2022.

He was born in Warren on July 23, 1933, the son of Rose Marie and Gerald Kirkwood and was a lifelong area resident.

Joe was a 1951 graduate of Champion High School where he lettered in baseball and basketball.

It was at Champion High School that he met the love of his life, Phyllis A. Russell. The high school sweethearts married at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Warren on December 27, 1952 and enjoyed 69 wonderful years together.

Joe worked for over 40 years at H.K. Porter and was a plant manager retiring in 1995.

Joe was a founding member of St. William Catholic Church in Champion, beginning in 1961 when it was first a mission offering Mass at Central School.

Joe was generous with his time and was a member and past president of the St. Williams Men’s Club working Friday night bingo and annual festivals. Joe was also an officer for Champion Band Boosters for many years.

Although dementia took a toll on Joe, he always ended a phone call by saying “Thank you for calling, I love you.”

He leaves behind to hold onto his precious memories his wife, Phyllis and his three children, Richard (Susan) of Summerville, South Carolina, Michael (Diana) of Champion and Kevin (Karen) of Toledo; grandpa to six, Brian Kirkwood, Kelly (Will) Ramey, Michael Kirkwood (Becky), Jenny (Brad)Doan, Valerie, and Shannon Kirkwood; great-grandpa to ten; siblings, William (Leah)Kirkwood of Southington and Geraldine Kirkwood of Howland and sister-in-law, Diane Kirkwood (Ron) of Champion.

Joe was preceded in death by his parents and two brothers, Ronald Kirkwood (Diane) and Harlin Lewis (Joan).

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Tuesday, April 19 at 11:00 a.m. at St. William Church in Champion, 5411 Mahoning Avenue NW, Warren, OH 44483, with Rev. Michael D. Balash officiating. Calling hours will be held one hour before, beginning at 10:00 a.m.

Burial will be in All Souls Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Joseph’s name to St. William Church, 5411 Mahoning Avenue NW, Warren, OH 44483.

Arrangements handled by Peter Rossi & Son Memorial Chapel.

To send flowers to Joseph’s family, please visit our floral store.

A television tribute will air Sunday, April 17, at the following approximate times: 6:27 p.m. on WYTV and 6:58 p.m. on MyYTV.