Joseph Chester Putnam, 66, of Three Oaks, Mich., passed away Saturday, May 14, 2022. Born September 30, 1955 in Greenville and grew up there and in Freelandville Ind. He spent most of his adult life in Merrillville, Ind. Joe was a Fire Marshal in the Indiana Department of Homeland Security for 3 years, before retiring. Prior to that, he was the fire inspector for the town of Merrillville for 14 years. Over the previous years, he worked as an auto mechanic, small engine mechanic, truck driver, courier driver, and underground coal miner. He was a member of the Merrillville/Ross Township Volunteer Fire Department for 27 years, as a volunteer master firefighter, fire inspector, fire investigator, haz-mat technician, and EMT. He attended Purdue University and University of Missouri Rolla School of Mines.
Joe was a devoted member of the Merrillville United Methodist Church, where he served as the youth group leader for several years. Joe loved sports, paintball, and snowmobiling. During snow storms, he would drive around to pull cars and trucks, even a semi once, out of ditches with his Subaru. Joe was a gifted mechanic who could fix almost anything that was broken. He will be dearly missed. He was preceded in death by his parents, Chester and Marjorie Putnam; and sister, Claudia Hannah.
Survivors include his wife, Pat (Edwards) Putnam; children, Kristy Putnam, Matthew (Corin Erwin) Putnam, Cassandra (Kory Gouwens) Putnam; brother, David (Kim) Putnam, and many beloved nieces, nephews, cousins, and in-laws.
Friends may visit with the family on Saturday, May 21, 2022 at Geisen-Pruzin Funeral & Cremation Services, 6360 Broadway Ave., Merrillville, IN 46410 from 12:00 p.m. until the time of service at 3:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be given in Joe’s name to your favorite charity, or plant a sugar maple tree per Joe’s request.
Visit Joe’s online guestbook at www.GeisenFuneralHome.com 219-663-2500.