OLD LYME, Conn. (CBS Local) — A Connecticut man, known for pulling pranks, got his very own comedic farewell this week in an unusual obituary. Joseph “Joe” A. Heller, Jr. of Old Lyme, passed away on Sept. 8 at age 82. His daughter Monique Heller memorialized his mischievous life and times in a 1,300-word, must-read obituary.
“I was writing it kind of as a memoir of my father. His local friends could relate and say, ‘oh, that was a Joe story,’” she told WFSB.
And those stories about Joe written with his daughter’s expertise included everything from pranking others with laxative-laced cakes to his background checks on his daughter’s boyfriends
“We always called him the informal mayor of town because he never went somewhere, where he didn’t know some one,” Monique said. “My dad loved to humiliate us and he loved to poke fun at us.”
Obituary for Old Lyme father going viral https://t.co/9exikUgnvD
— WFSB Channel 3 (@WFSBnews) September 12, 2019
In that same spirit, Monique gave her dad a little bit of his own humorous medicine, because, she says he could take it.
“Yes, my dad was known for his thriftiness around town,” she wrote. “He was a frequent shopper at the Essex dump.”
In the days since Joe passed, news of the humorous obit has spread all over the country and world, and the family has been flooded with condolences and well-wishes from dozens of people they have never met.
“Consistently people are saying to me thank you for sharing your dad with us, I wish we had known your dad, he sounds like my kind of guy.”
Heller was a Seabee in the Navy and Monique says her father’s passing “is turning into a fundraiser” for the Seabee Memorial Scholarship Association.
I think I’ve struck a universal chord,” Heller said.
Graveside services are scheduled for Friday the 13th in Centerbrook.