Joe Santos died peacefully at his home in Nantucket on July 10, 2017 with family by his side. Joe was 93 years old.
Born in New Bedford, Massachusetts September 19, 1923 to Manuel J. Santos and Mary (Custodio) Santos, Joe was the youngest of three children. Joe’s eldest brother John (Johnny Trombone) Santos passed in August 2005, while Joe’s sister Mary (Santos) Semedo enjoyed visiting her brother recently this month, along with his niece Mary Lou and nephews John (Bumpsey), Russell and Stephen.
Joe first met his bride-to-be working the steamship between New Bedford and Nantucket; one-way trip taking 5 hours in those days. Joe married Christine (Chris) Perry on May 5, 1944 in New Bedford. After residing in New Bedford for many years Chris and Joe returned to Nantucket with their sons Joseph and Glenn. After returning, their daughter Perry was born on Nantucket.
He worked for Island Service (later Harbor Fuel) before starting his Oil Burner Service Company. Joe was well-known among islanders, providing heat and refrigeration services for residences and businesses across Nantucket and Siasconset.
Throughout the years Joe was active in a variety of community activities. He refereed basketball alongside Ralph Hardy’s father Frank at Bennett Hall and later the high school. Joe also served on the boards of Nantucket Boys and Girls Club and the Nantucket Bank. A Knight of Columbus, TJ McGee Council member for more than 60 years, a 4th Degree Honorary Bishop Tyler General Assembly member, Joe was a long time parishioner of St. Mary Our Lady of the Isle Nantucket.
Tragically, Joe and Chris lost both of their sons. Joseph Manuel Santos, Jr. died on July 5, 2002 following surgery; Glenn Robert Santos died on July 14, 2007 in a boating accident.
Joe is survived by his daughter Perry and her husband John Nemechek, daughter-in-laws Chirlaine Santos (Joseph) and Alison Santos (Glenn); grandchildren, Tami Heywood, Darryl Santos, Craig Santos, Caroline Nemechek and Catherine Nemechek; great grandchildren Ashley Gomes, Jalen Heywood, Keelan Santos, Leksana Andrews, Darien Santos, Airlie Santos and Taylor Santos; sister Mary Semedo of Connecticut, sister-in-laws Mary Stanley, Nancy Armstrong of Nantucket, Thelma Roderick of Falmouth, brothers-in-law Joseph Perry of Maine and Robert Peaker of Nantucket and many nieces, nephews and dear friends.
Visitation will be at 12:00 to 12:45 P.M. and funeral mass at 1:00 P.M. at St. Mary Our Lady of the Isle Nantucket, MA Monday July 17, 2017; graveside service to follow.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Boys and Girls Club of Nantucket, 61 Sparks Ave. P.O. Box 269 and Saint Vincent de Paul Society, c/o St. Mary Our Lady of the Isle 3 Federal St., P.O. Box 1168 Nantucket, MA 02554.