Cover photo for Joseph James Olson (Papa Joe)'s Obituary

Joseph James Olson (Papa Joe)

It is with great sadness that the family of Joseph James Olson (PaPa Joe) shares his passing on April 4


, 2020.  Joe went by many names, Son, Daddy, PaPa, Joey, Brother, Friend, Husband, and of course PaPa Joe.

Joe was born January 28


, 1953 in Brooklyn, NY.  He was the oldest of 7 children.  Joe volunteered to serve his country in the Army when he was 17, this afforded him ability to travel the country and do things he had always dreamed of. He spent time in Hawaii and often told stories about the adventures he experienced there.

After he left the army his adventurous nature had just begun.  He decided to visit Alaska where he fell in love with everything wild about the place.  Joe met his wife Debbie after vising his family back in NY and they fell in love and she followed him right back to Alaska where they were married and had their daughter Megan.  Joe and Debbie then moved to California for sunshine and beaches where they had their daughter Nikki.  After Debbie passed away in 1995 he moved to Arizona to join his parents and the rest of his siblings.

Joe had a free spirit and a great desire for adventure always.  He loved to help others whether it was by lending an ear or a couch to sleep on.  Even when he didn’t have a lot he would still offer the shirt off his back if he thought you were a good person.  He had the biggest heart and always wanted his family to know how much he cared.  Joe lived for his kids and grandkids and always made it a point to call ALL the time.  He was forgiving and never held a grudge.  He instilled in his kids how short life is and that you should always work through things and most importantly say “ I love you” all the time.  He never ended a call without saying it.

Joe loved being a Papa more than anything and spent hours with his grandson teaching him “Grandpa things” .  He spent the last year of his life meeting his oldest daughter Milissa and her 8 beautiful children who he was so proud of. He was able to spend this year with his daughters and Grandson enjoying quality time and making wonderful memories that we will all cherish always.

Joe found comfort in his faith and death was not something he ever feared, he knew he would be with his family one day and will rest in paradise.  What he leaves behind for his children is a lifetime full of lessons, journals of letters, endless messages, and the understanding that unconditional love is so precious and will never be forgotten.

He is survived by his three daughters and their husbands , Megan Danell (Jeremiah Danell), Nicole Lewis (Richard Lewis), Milissa Rankin (Chad Rankin), his grandchildren Isaiah, Riana, Kayleigh, Kelsey, Zach, Megan, Mya, Ava, Ellie, Belle, and Man.

His siblings Nancy Depalo (Joe Depalo), Michael Olson, Patricia Aiello (Joseph Aiello), Robert Olson, Margaret Crabtree (Donny Crabtree)

His God son Joey Depalo, and his nieces and nephews Christina, Jennifer, Tina, Danielle, Salvatore, Christopher and Mariah.

He was preceded in death by his wife Deborah Olson, his mother and father Joseph and Harriet Olson and his brother Tommy Olson.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Joseph James Olson (Papa Joe), please visit our flower store.


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