I just wanted to let you know that Joe Stevens passed away on Thursday evening, October 5, 2017. He was 71.
Joe was a remarkable and gentle man. While we may have picked on him a bit, he gave as much as he got from us.
Joe was a Vietnam veteran, and I had many a conversation with him about his travels in the Navy as his ship often visited many of the places near my father’s last duty assignment in the Philippines. Oh the days of 90-plus degrees, 90 percent humidity and San Miguel beer!
Last year he and his wife, Sue, bought a house in Arizona and he looked forward to spending more time there. I think the warm weather helped his old bones. He would call me every Tuesday evening, and made sure that it was after my favorite show, NCIS, was over. We would talk about the ratings that he had done or was about to do with the Arizona Golf Association. The calls almost always lasted an hour, or whenever my kidneys would give out.
I wish that I had listened to him and found out the secret to taking no more than two hours to rate nine holes!
When he got back up here in the late spring he would often drop by my office and we would shoot the (bleep)! I truly enjoyed those conversations and joining him for lunch at Twin Lakes G&CC in Federal Way when we would meet there. They do a great job with their soups at Twin Lakes, and if you know Joe, he liked his soup.
For you who have not had the privilege of riding in Joe’s motorhome on a rating, I need to tell you it was a sight to see. Think of the WSGA Course Rating Team showing up at a golf course out in the middle of nowhere in a motorhome. You would think that we had a large budget for this Committee. When we met him in the morning he had the coffee brewed and donuts ready. When we finished the rating he had snacks on board that would tide us over till we found the closest Dairy Queen or restaurant.
Joe Stevens, you were a gentle soul who made us all laugh at not only him but ourselves. You will be missed!
From John Saegner, WSGA Sr. Director of Handicapping & Course Rating, and from all of Joe’s friends on the WSGA Course Rating Team