Cover photo for Joel Howell Lipsey's Obituary
Joel Howell Lipsey Profile Photo
1937 Joel 2020

Joel Howell Lipsey

September 19, 1937 — April 10, 2020

With great sadness I announce the loss of my beloved husband, soulmate and my best friend. Joel passed away on Friday, April 10 at Duke Hospital after heart valve surgery with pulmonary complications.

Joel was born September 19, 1937 in Chicago where he grew up. He served in the United State’s Air Force before he began working at Underwriters Laboratories Inc. He loved his job at UL and retired from UL in 2001. Joel and I met in Waukegan, IL where he taught 7th grade and were married on March 30, 1979.

Joel was preceded in death by his parents and step-brother. He leaves behind his wife and best friend, Cathy, and adult children Scott, Lynn, and Brian.

He was very active with the American Legion and Civil Air Patrol for over 50 years. He loved trains and had many models and knew so much about trains. Joel loved his dogs, he had many throughout his life. He leaves behind: Diablo, Max, Bella and Buddy who miss him terribly. His other passions were his friends. He had such a great personality, was loved by all and never met a stranger.

A life so beautifully lived deserves to be beautifully remembered.


Joel Lipsey, our friend and brother in Christ left us on April 10, 2020. Please join with his wife, Cathy, and friends exactly 1 year from his passing to celebrate his life at St. Matthew Catholic Church on Saturday April 10, 2021 at 12:00 noon. Visitation will begin at 11:30 a.m. Celebrating the Funeral Mass will be Fr. Ed Burch and Fr. Robert Staley. The Funeral Mass will also be lived-streamed and available on St. Matthew’s Catholic Community YouTube channel.

Please RSVP to Don Williams at (919) 457-8028 or email, with any questions.

Interment with military honors will be conducted at the National Cemetery in Salisbury, NC on April 12, 2021 at 2:00 p.m.


In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to:

NC Wing Civil Air Patrol at 3520 Alamance Road Burlington, NC 27215

Knights of Columbus, Pope John Paul II, Council #13812, St. Matthews Catholic Church at 1001 Mason Rd, Durham, NC 27712

Durham VA Health Care System at 508 Fulton Street, Durham, NC 27705

The American Legion, 4 N Blount Street, Raleigh, NC 27601

The Animal Protection Society of Durham (where Joel rescued Rotties) 2117 E Club Blvd, Durham, NC 27704



To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Joel Howell Lipsey, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, April 10, 2022

Starts at 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

St. Matthew Catholic Church

1001 Mason Rd, Durham, NC 27712

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Starts at 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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