5345 South Street | Vermilion, OH 44089
Obituary of Joseph Ralph Sharpnack, Jr.
Joseph Ralph Sharpnack, Jr., 81, of Vermilion, died Monday, February 22, 2021 at Mercy Health - Allen Hospital after a lengthy illness.
He was born May 31, 1939 in Cincinnati and had been a Vermilion resident for the past 71 years.
Joe graduated from Vermilion High School in 1957 and attended Kent State University with a walk on basketball scholarship and was a member of the Delta Tau Delta Fraternity. Joe was a veteran of the US Army.
After returning from his time in the Army, Joe started working at the family Chevrolet Oldsmobile dealership that his father started in 1949. In 1968, Joe became one of the youngest Paragraph 3 dealers in the region. In 1994 he along with his brother, Tom, purchased the Chevrolet dealership in Willard and later the Ford dealership also in Willard. Joe served as the President of Sharpnack Auto Family in Vermilion and Willard until 2007.
He was a member of St. Mary Catholic Church, Vermilion and a life member of AMVETS Post #22. He had been a Trustee on the Board of Directors for the Cleveland Auto Dealers Association as well as the NE Ohio Chevy Network. He had also served on the Board for Community Health Partners. Joe was a 65 year member of the Vermilion Boat Club where he served in many different capacities, the Vermilion Yacht Club, Put in Bay Yacht Club, Crew's Nest, and Catawba Island Club. Joe enjoyed sailing and boating; as a crew winning 45 Star Fleet Regattas, with his most prized win being a first place race finish during the star fleet World Championship Regatta in 1964. He also enjoyed playing tennis, skiing, golfing, dancing and especially enjoyed traveling. Joe and his wife, Jan, wintered in Jupiter, FL for the last 20 years, traveled all 50 states and over 25 countries and would often be the last two to leave the dance floor at any event…which is very symbolic of how they lived life!
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Janet (nee Soens) Sharpnack of Vermilion; son, Joseph "Jay" (Stephanie) Sharpnack, III of Bay Village; daughter, Susan Sharpnack of Vermilion; grandchildren, Allison, Joe, and Sophie Sharpnack and Andrew "A.J." and Alex Dunn; his brother, Thomas (Karen) Sharpnack of Norwalk; sister in law, Patricia Sharpnack of Punta Gorda, FL; sister and brother in law, Shirley and Dale Rider of Maitland FL; and several nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph Ralph and Elizabeth (nee Rice) Sharpnack and his brother, Fredrick C. Sharpnack.
A Mass of Christian Burial will take place Friday, Feb. 26, 2021 at 11:30 a.m. at St. Mary Catholic Parish, 731 Exchange Street, Vermilion, OH 44089. The service will be live streamed and can be viewed at https://stmaryvermilion.org/mass-live-stream. Friends and family who want to come are welcome to attend, but due to Covid-19, we are asking that people be careful to maintain social distancing, wear masks, and refrain from embracing. Private interment will follow at Brownhelm Cemetery. A celebration of Joe's life will be held Monday, July 12, 2021 at the Vermilion Boat Club. The time will be announced at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are suggested to: Joseph R. Sharpnack Jr. Memorial Scholarship Fund (automotive related education), c/o of the Community Foundation of Lorain County, 9080 Leavitt Rd., Elyria, OH 44035 (peoplewhocare.org/funds).
Online condolences may be made at www.riddlefuneralhome.
5345 South Street
Vermilion, OH 44089
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