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Posted on February 28, 2018 | 12:41 p.m.

Joseph Charles Formosa, formerly of Santa Barbara, 1949-2018

Source: M. Myers

Joseph Formosa
Joseph Formosa

Joseph Formosa passed away peacefully, surrounded by family at his home in Dorena, Ore., on Sunday, Jan. 21, after a year-long battle with colon cancer.

He was born on April 6, 1949, in San Francisco to Anthony and Mary Pat Formosa.

Joe grew up in nearby Daly City and as a kid rode his bike all over San Francisco, was catcher on the baseball team, competed in swim meets, and at age 14 got his first surfboard from Jack O'Neil.

After graduating from high school, Joe attended UC Santa Barbara, mainly because it was by the beach. After college, he moved north with friends to a wooded hillside on the outskirts of Cottage Grove.

He later married and moved to a small farm in Lorane, where he worked various jobs in the woods.

Joe moved back to Santa Cruz in 1980, and there he married Vicki. Blending Joe's kids with Vicki's, and later adding three of their own, they had a big 10-kid family.

Joe loved being by the ocean and surfing with old friends. He joined a masters swim team and competed in open-water races in the ocean and lakes.

Joe worked at his dad's store in San Francisco, driving 80 miles each way, but every vacation the family spent camping in the Cascades or the Sierras.

In 1989, Joe and Vicki found the perfect property with great neighbors in Dorena where they moved and raised their kids. Joe still enjoyed lap swimming, but his favorite summer place to swim was Dorena Lake.

To support the new place, Joe tried several occupations, but ended up going to truck-driving school for more long-term work.

Joe spent the last 20 years of his life driving a maxi tractor trailer around the Northwest. He met many good friends during those years and tallied up nearly 3 million miles.

Joe was a man of many talents and passions, including playing guitar, baking artisan bread, and keeping all the cars running. One of his most useful skills was running a chain saw, falling trees and gathering firewood.

He loved going up to Diamond Lake to cut lodgepole pine. He also had a sharp wit and acute sense of humor; his stories still amuse and frighten his kids.

Joe will be forever cherished and deeply missed, especially by his dear wife Vicki and his children Amy Stone, Rachel and Nicole Formosa, Sam, Ted and Rose Formosa, Vanya Lamperes, Ben Yates, Mandy Myers, and Teresa Weaver.

Mourning him also are his brothers Peter, Dave, Paul and Tim Formosa; sister Gina Rogers; and eight grandchildren. His parents and a sister Anne preceded him in death.

Condolences may be left at www.smithlundmills.com, or sent to Smith-Lund Mills, 123 S. Seventh St. Cottage Grove, OR 97424.

— M. Myers


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