John J. “Joe” Baxter passed away peacefully on November 4th after 89 incredible years of a life well lived. Joe was married for 64 wonderful years to the love of his life, Peggy. Together they raised their beautiful family in Greenville, where they have been faithful parishioners of St. Philip Parish for 59 years.
Joe was the only child of the late Samuel D. And Louise (Woods) Baxter. He is survived by his wife Margaret “Peggy” (Carberry); his children, Carolyn Pina (Stephen), J. Joseph Baxter (Helynn), and Susan Rinaldi (Joseph); his seven grandchildren: Matthew and Jeffrey Pina, Ashley Lemieux (Robert), Joseph and Samantha Baxter and Madison and Meghan Rinaldi; and two great grandchildren, Cecelia and Jack Lemieux.
Joe grew up in the Mount Pleasant section of Providence and graduated from LaSalle Academy, Class of ‘49 and attended URI where he studied Engineering and ran Cross Country for the Rams. He later served his country honorably in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. After returning home he was employed by AT&T for over 35 years.
Joe served as the first president and longtime coach of the Smithfield Youth Hockey Association. In addition, he was instrumental in the building of the Smithfield Municipal Ice Rink. He was a former member of the Greenville Water Board and was a lifelong member of the Elks Lodge #2359.
Joe was an avid Boston sports fan who lived and died with every win and loss. Fiercely proud of his Scottish heritage, he often reminisced of his trip with Peggy to visit his parents’ hometown of Glasgow, Scotland and cherished his annual trips to the Scottish Highland Games held in New Hampshire.
Joe leaves numerous friends and friendships both here in Rhode Island and at the Countryside Golf and Country Club in Naples, Florida where he and Peggy wintered for the past 25 years. Those friendships will endure forever. He was the consummate gentleman whose home always welcomed his family and many friends.
His love of family was endless. His three children, their spouses, and his seven grandchildren were the apple of his eye and the recent addition of his two great-grandchildren, Cecelia and Jack, only furthered his love.
Arrangements are being handled by Russell J. Boyle and Son Funeral Home. Due to COVID restrictions, calling hours will be private. A Mass of Christian Burial to be held on Monday, November 9th at 11:00 am in Saint Philip Church and will also be private due to COVID capacity restrictions. However, the Mass may be viewed virtually on the YouTube Page of St. Philip Parish, Greenville. Burial, with military honors, will be private. While flowers are respectfully omitted, any donations in Joe’s name may be made to the St. Philip Parish Memorial Society 622 Putnam Pike, Greenville, RI 02828.
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