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“I remember Joe at his 90th birthday party and the fun he had with family and friends that day. Who can forget his smile and gentle demeanor-what a...Read More »
1 of 8 | Posted by: Paul and Dianne Ruggle - Newton, IA

“Uncle Joe and Aunt Rozella let me stay in their basement during my senior year at Iowa State. Uncle Joe's quiet demeanor and smile always reminded...Read More »
2 of 8 | Posted by: Bill Hurd - Grand Junction, CO

“Staying at Joe and Rozella's I remember spending a few days at Joe and Rozella's farm on two different occasions when Mom (Arva) was in the hospital...Read More »
3 of 8 | Posted by: Jim Ruggle - Waunakee, WI

“Grandpa was such a sweet man. He was always pleasant to visit with and also very generous. I have so many fond memories with him. The ones that...Read More »
4 of 8 | Posted by: Laura Friday-Alliss

“I was so sorry to hear about Uncle Joe. He and Aunt Rozella were my Godparents, and I loved them both. He was so kind and sweet to me. It was so...Read More »
5 of 8 | Posted by: Margaret Ruggle - Des Moines, IA

“Dear Family - We are so sad to hear of your loss. We know that Arva will be welcoming your dad into heaven with open arms. May you find comfort in...Read More »
6 of 8 | Posted by: Dan & Gina Ruggle - Perry, IA

“Dad, you were always nearby whenever anyone wanted advice or to just have a listener for a while. We will remember the many school projects that you...Read More »
7 of 8 | Posted by: Lois Friday - daughter

“You have my deapest sympathy, Joe was the sweetest man. He will forever be in our hearts! ”
8 of 8 | Posted by: Karen Davis ~Legacy - Iowa City, IA


Joseph W. Hurd, 94 of Iowa City died Tuesday, March 29, 2011, at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Iowa City.

Funeral Mass will be held 2 p.m. Friday, April 1, 2011 at St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church in Iowa City. Visitation will be prior to the service Friday, from 12-1:45 at the Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service in Iowa City. Burial with military honors will follow at Memory Gardens Cemetery. A memorial fund has been established in Joseph’s name and will be used to support future Honor Flights of the Quad Cities. Online condolences may be sent for his family through the web @

Joseph William Hurd was born May 15, 1916, in Perry, Iowa the son of Joseph Adrian and Evaline A. (Bender) Hurd. He graduated from St. Patrick’s High School in Perry in 1933. He later enlisted in the United States Army during World War II, where he served in the Signal Corps. Joseph was united in marriage to Lathelma Rozella Griggs on April 19, 1941, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Perry. The couple lived in Perry for nearly twenty years; they had also resided in Ames, Boone and Marshalltown before moving to Iowa City in 1989. Joe has been an electrician most of his life, working at Iowa State University while living in Ames.

His family includes daughters and their husbands, Joanne and Philip O'Gara of Davenport and Lois and Jim Friday of Iowa City; sons and their wives, Dennis and Mary Hurd of Bettendorf and Tom and Nancy Hurd of Mason City; twelve grandchildren Cynthia (Dave) Flagel, Jeannette (Steve) Slade, Theresa (Jim) Vondran, Dr. Michelle O’Gara, Michael (Jessica) Hurd, Jody Hurd, Kelly (Randy) Garza, Laura (Dan) Alliss, Tyson (Onesty) Friday, Emily (Mike) Curry, Kyle Hurd, and Alyse (Mark) Dilts; ... READ MORE →

Military Service
U.S. Army • Sergeant • Radio Repairman\Instructor
March 1942 through March 1944, Camp Murphy, Florida


Joe was also a rifle marksman. As an 8th grade history project, Nate Hartman interviewed Joe and learned the following: Joe served 3 months basic training at Camp Crowden, Missouri. Everyone was given an aptitude test. Out of 50 questions he got 49 correct. Joe had an amateur radio license so he was sent to Ft. Monmouth, NJ where they taught basics of electricity, radio, and radar. After 3 months a Signal Core school was opened in Camp Murphy, FL and Joe was one of thirteen people to be sent there to be a teacher. Each person was assigned a different topic to teach and some taught in several areas. They had 40-50 students for an hour at a time. Two subjects were taught per day. Joe enjoyed his duties and always knew he had a bed to sleep at night and three meals a day. Joe enjoyed working with electricity and learned how and why he was doing things. There were no transistors at that time. Everything was vacuum tubes. Radar machines being tested were portable units with generators and were mounted on trucks to be movable. They would show in a dark room--when the radar machine was turned on the lights of the room would come on. They didn't have to turn the room lights on ahead of time. Practice was done with search lights instead of machine guns. After the object was in the radar screen, they would turn on the search light and consider the plane a hit if it appeared in the light. After Joe returned home from service, he said his very young daughter, Joanne, used to like to wear his Army boots. Joe said Joanne liked to walk in the boots more than he did.