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Joe V. Michael

October 2, 1935 March 17, 2019
Joe V. Michael
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Obituary for Joe V. Michael

Joe V. Michael, age 83, a resident of Carillon at Stonegate, and a resident of Aurora, IL since 1986, formerly of Pittsburgh, PA, and Long Island, NY, passed away on Sunday, March 17, 2019 at his home in Aurora, Illinois with his wife at his side. He was born October 2, 1935 in South Whitley, IN.

Beloved husband of Valerie Michael (nee Jeter), whom he married November 23, 1986, loving father of Susan (Tim) Maloney, Jane (Gary) Portman, Jonathan (Rochelle) Michael, Derek Efimetz and Eugene Michael. Joe was the grandfather of Amanda, Jenna and Olivia Maloney; Michael, Rachel, Nicole and Stephen Portman; David, Justin and Michael Grogan, son of the late Samuel Elden “Punch” Michael and Edna Emily Michael, brother of Tom (Bonnie) Michael, the late Steve (Lois) Michael, the late Richard “Dick” (Sarah) Michael and the late Mollie (the late Jim) Payne, brother-in-law of Gail Norton-Locke, former spouse of Judith Michael, cousin of eight, uncle, great-uncle and friend of many.

Joe was raised in South Whitley, IN and attended Larwell High School. He received a BA in Chemistry from Wabash College in Crawfordsville, IN, and a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Rochester in New York.

Joe began his career teaching classes as a postdoctoral associate at Harvard University. He worked as a postdoctoral associate and chemist for Brookhaven National Laboratory and for Carnegie-Mellon University - Pittsburgh as associate professor. From 1975-1977 Joe was a research associate for Goddard Space Flight Center where he worked with NASA and retired as a senior chemist at Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont, Il on December 1st, 2015.

Over a long and successful career, Joe had over 200 publications in science magazines and was a Fellow of The Combustion Institute, which are members of the international combustion community recognized by their peers as distinguished for outstanding contributions to combustion. He has mentored 10 graduate students and 9 postdoctoral associates. Joe was a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Chemical Society, American Geophysical Union and Sigma Xi.

Joe was a member of Grace United Methodist Church in Naperville and sang tenor with the Naperville Men's Glee Club. He enjoyed extensive travel with his wife, Valerie, and spoke at many chemistry symposiums and meetings in the U.S. and around the world speaking about his work.

Joe will be remembered as a selfless human being and the man everybody loved who laughed often. He loved family and would rather speak well of everyone than find fault. Fishing was a great pass time and he was a part of a cousin’s quartet. At any time, he could be heard singing or whistling. Joe took part in coaching basketball, boy scouts, Indian Guides, attending concerts, encouraging and supporting his children to be the best they can be.

Joe was a proud member of The Naperville Men’s Glee Club.

Visitation Friday, March 22, 2019, 4:00-8:00 PM at Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 44 S. Mill St, Naperville, IL.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, March 23, 12:00 PM in the funeral home with Rev. Don Niswonger officiating.

Interment is private.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Joe's memory may be made to:

Lewy Body Dementia Association (LBDA), 912 Killian Hill Road SW, Suite 205, Lilburn, GA 30047, (404) 418-7396,


The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, Grand Central Station, PO Box 4777, New York, NY 10163-4777, (800-708-7644),


The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF), 1250 Fourth Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401, 1-800-757-CURE (2873),

For more information, please call (630) 355-0213 or visit

To plant a tree in memory of Joe V. Michael, please visit our Tribute Store.

Previous Events





4:00 PM 3/22/2019 4:00:00 PM - 8:00 PM 3/22/2019 8:00:00 PM
Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home

44 S. Mill St.
Naperville, IL 60540

Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home
44 S. Mill St. Naperville 60540 IL
United States





12:00 PM 3/23/2019 12:00:00 PM
Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home

44 S. Mill St.
Naperville, IL 60540

Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home
44 S. Mill St. Naperville 60540 IL
United States

Memorial Contribution

The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF)

1250 Fourth Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Lewy Body Dementia Association

912 Killian Hill Road, S.W.
Lilburn, GA 30047

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research

Grand Central Station, PO Box 4777
New York,, NY 10163-4777

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