Joel I. Sweet, 69, born April 5, 1950 to the late Fredrick and Evelyn Sweet of Manchester CT. passed away peacefully at home on Friday, October 11, 2019 surrounded by his loving family. His life was cut short by cancer and he was mad as hell about it right to the end. He graduated from Manchester High School in 1968 and, when drafted in 1969, chose to serve in the U.S. Navy. Joel served a tour in Vietnam, Naval Support Activity, Danang Republic Vietnam from 1969-1971. He sailed the world, stopping at countless ports and countries. Joel was honorably discharged as an E5 with a rank of MM2. Joel has two children, Tobey Sweet and his wife Sara of Ellington and Amanda Sweet Hayes and her husband Pete of Manchester all of whom he would like to thank for the work they did for him. Joel met and married the love of his life Patty in 2008, or “SweetThing” as he affectionately called her, who stood by his side through it all. They traveled the country and made so many memories, planning on many more before the cancer cut short his life. He fought so hard right until the end, never wanting to leave her side. In addition to his wife and kids he leaves behind two grandchildren, John LeDoux and Trevor Sweet of Manchester, his step children, Adam and his wife Miranda, Keith, Rachal and Chris, all who loved him and he loved them back. Everyone will miss all the stories and laughter by the backyard fires with him. Joel worked 37 yrs. at Rogers Corporation as a millwright and machinist. He was a volunteer fireman at MFD 8th Utilities District for years and ran in the Manchester Road Race for 10 years in a row. One of his favorite pastimes was collecting natures best creations "minerals". He belonged to many mineral and rock clubs throughout the northeast. Joel was a past officer of the Meriden Mineral Club for many years and spent years prospecting the hills of Central CT. His collection of minerals was judged among the best in CT. A lover of nature and all aspects of the outdoors, finding arrowheads and Indian artifacts was another great passion. Joel loved his beachfront cottage on Old Kelsey Point in Westbrook, CT that was built by his great- grandfather in 1902 and handed down. He took so much pride in maintaining it to its original stature. A true waterfront gem, from April "water on" till October "water off". Many flocked to the front porch to one of the many rocking chairs to enjoy each other and the beautiful view of the Long Island Sound. His many summer picnics always included his favorite food, foot long Hummel hot dogs. Joel was past president of OKP Beach Association, an association which his great grandfather founded on the same front porch back in 1920. So many memories were made on that porch. His love of salt water flowed through his veins and he couldn't get enough of it. He enjoyed fishing and lobstering and try as he might he could never beat his son for the elusive state record fluke, which Tobey holds to this day. One of his favorite places was Cape Cod, where he would fish for Stripers at the Canal or go beach combing in Wellfleet. Joel had countless friends of whom he cherished dearly especially; Ronnie Larson of Manchester, Bob and Diane Hindle of Haddam Neck and Nelson and Christine Magleora of Windsor Locks, better friends no one could find. Special hugs and kisses to all his chemo nurses at the DeQuattro Cancer Center, especially Cheryl whom he couldn't have gone through all this without her. She was truly his angel. Joel also leaves his beloved Mildred, a 35 Chevrolet 2 door sedan which he built from scratch and drove for 40 years, enjoying every minute of it. In lieu of flowers, save your money, instead have a Miller Lite at Elmo’s for me. Calling hours will be held at the Holmes-Watkins Funeral Home, 400 Main St. in Manchester on Wednesday, October 16, 2019 from 4-8 pm. Burial with military honors will be private in Buckland Cemetery, Manchester at the convenience of the family. To leave an online condolence please visit www.holmeswatkins.com
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