Mr. Joseph D. Potter, of Nova Scotia, Canada, formerly of Waltham, died Friday, December 30, 2022, in VA Medical Center in West Roxbury. He was 82.
Joe was born November 13, 1940, in Waltham a son of the late Gordon and Roxie (Martin) Potter. A graduate from Waltham High School he then earned a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from the University of New Hampshire.
Joe was a proud United States veteran. He honorably served in the United States Air Force in the 12th Air Commando Squadron during the Vietnam War and saw action as his unit was responsible for much of the chemical warfare during this war. He also worked as an aircraft maintenance specialist and was an active member of the Operation Ranch Hand Vietnam Association in which he remained involved with its reunion committee as its vice-president. He was also an expert marksman and earned a profile on ‘Together We Served’ which showed his achievements as a veteran.
He worked as an environmental specialist for Polaroid Corporation for over thirty-five years. Upon retirement in 1998 he fulfilled a life-long dream of moving to Nova Scotia. He bought land that enabled him to have horses and other animals. He owned and operated Lakeview Restaurant & Dairy Bar, proudly serving Nova Scotia’s great seafood with his native New England twists. He was an active member of the Great Island Preservation Society and the Goat Island Baptist Church, aka 'The Potter Church' as it dates back to generations of family members.
Joe was also a musician; he could play piano, and anything with keys, organ, keyboard and even an accordion! Music was a big part of his life and he would entertain with the accordion on birthdays and numerous other occasions. He really loved country music and was a champion country music dancer and member of award winning ‘Team Strictly Country Dancing’. He attended concerts and live bands frequently. Joe had a terrific sense of humor, was a constant prankster and stayed in touch with so many lifelong friends.
Those that knew Joe could attest that his Ford pickup truck was a pride and joy, and it was kept meticulous, but this was the same for most everything in his life…he was a perfectionist! Blessed with the ability to fix anything and everything there was no task too small or left to others at any of his homes. And it’s no secret that while he worked hard for his money but was careful when it came time to spend. He was a great negotiator, story teller and all-around great guy. He loved being able to capture the moments so always had a camera on hand.
He will be long remembered for this strong work ethic, compassionate and caring and always centered on his family. Joe was a really smart guy and he always kept in touch with his comrades, cousins and classmates. He kept his genealogy webpage current and had both a both the Potter and Martin families well documented. He loved the outdoors and animals.
Joe leaves his children, Joseph D. Potter Jr. (Karlee) of Stow and Heather Rae Potter (Amedeo Lundin) of Salem; his grandchildren, Hazel May and Violet Jo Potter, Christopher Silvestrone (Heather Phillips), Christina Wallace, Shawn Sturtevant; his great-granddaughter, Aurora Jade Silvestrone; his sister, June Gentile of Plymouth and the late Lorraine Bregoli, Chester, Robert and Donald Potter; also survived by nieces & nephews.
Family and friends will honor and remember Joe's life by gathering for a calling hour on Saturday, January 7th from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. followed by his funeral service at 11 a.m. Burial with military honors will follow in Mount Feake Cemetery, Waltham.
Memorials in his name may be made New England Center for Homeless Veterans, 17 Court Street, Boston, MA 02108.