Joseph Irwin Groden was born on February 23, 1933 in Rochester, New York to Doris and Earl Groden. Three years later he became the proud older brother to Marvin Groden. Joe was surrounded by a loving extended family growing up with many of his relatives who lived in Rochester and Buffalo.
Joe was a wonderful student and employee. When he was young, his jobs included working for the Rochester Red Wings and a local pharmacy. Joe attended Franklin High School and graduated from the University at Buffalo with a degree in pharmacy. After college, he joined the Navy and was stationed in Newport, Rhode Island as a pharmacist. His first daughter, Jodi was born in Newport and shortly after her birth the family returned to Rochester.
Joe joined Dox Drugs and he welcomed daughters Lori and Marcie to his family. He used to always say how lucky he was to work in a drug store with three daughters!
Joe became a partner in Dox Drugs and while he enjoyed the management side of business, his true gift was as a pharmacist. After Dox was sold, he spent years managing businesses with medical equipment, consulting in various areas of the health field, and in his spare time still filling prescriptions. He volunteered his time to many organizations and was a founding member of Temple Beth Am serving as its first president.
Joe married his best friend and beloved Grace in 1986. He became the loving step-father to Debbie (Gene) Caccamise, Lorrie Zgiet, Douglas (Christine) Lynn and David (Laurie) Lynn. Over the years his family grew to include, became “Grandpa Joe” to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
For over 20 years Joe managed the Rochester Health Fair and his talents were evident in how he recruited vendors and expanded the event over the years.
Even though he was extremely busy professionally, Joe had many outside interests He enjoyed reading, was a wonderful organizer and would plan marvelous family vacations. He loved tennis and would travel to see professional tournaments. He was a member of the Tennis Club of Rochester for many years. Up until recently he still played two days a week.
He also loved Broadway spending many vacations in New York City and catching all of the latest musicals. He had a huge collection of playbills and knew the words to almost every song. Actually, he loved musicals whether they were on the big stage or at a high school. Joe took great pride in being a judge for many years for Rochester Broadway Theater League’s Stars of Tomorrow.
Joe had a quick mind, was a true gentleman and could not stand injustice. He relished staying active and never wanted to retire.
He will be remembered for the wonderful life he lead, the talents he shared and the love he gave.
Funeral Services will be held on MONDAY, November 13, 2017 at 1:30 PM at Temple Beth El (139 Winton Road South).
Donations may be made to Golisano's Children Hospital in Joe's memory.