Joseph Brubaker

Obituary of Joseph D. Brubaker

Joseph D. Brubaker, Jr., CDR USN (RET), 89 of Viera, Florida passed away peacefully on Wednesday, March 1, 2023. He was born on July 23, 1933 in New Brighton, PA to parents Joseph and Helen Brubaker. Joe fondly relayed childhood memories of time spent on his Uncle Shad’s farm and summers at Lake Chautaqua in Upstate New York. He attended New Brighton High School where he met his future wife Shirley Milne in the Marching Band. After high school, Joe earned a Bachelor’s Degree through Duke University’s ROTC Program and entered the US Navy in 1955. Joe and Shirley married on November 26, 1955 and over the next nine years they had five children. Joe served as a Naval Officer, earning a Master’s Degree in Economics. He had 11 assignments to include instructing at the Naval Academy and the Presidio in San Francisco, Naples, Italy, and New Orleans. Joe served two tours in the Vietnam War, both on land and at sea where he earned the Bronze Star. After 23 years of military service, Commander Brubaker and Shirley retired in August of 1978. They moved to Merritt Island, Florida in July of 1982 where Joe went back to school to learn computer programming and data processing. Joe worked for the City of Titusville, developing their current payroll system. He retired from the City in 1998. Joe and Shirley enjoyed gardening, being together with their family, and an occasional hand of bridge with their good friends Dan and Elaine. In 1999, Shirley passed away unexpectedly. Joe became more involved with his community and church where he met his future wife Betty Dry. They married on July 2, 2001 and enjoyed a happy life together for 19 years.

A humble man of God, Joe was committed to a life of service in retirement. He was a fervent volunteer to the Central Brevard Sharing Center, serving as Board Chairman, Treasurer, and Emergency Food Pantry volunteer. He was a Kiwanis member and Chapter President, Meals on Wheels volunteer, and supported many causes through Cocoa Presbyterian Church where he served as Treasurer, Elder, Choir Member, and Liturgist.

Shortly after Betty’s death in 2020, Joe began his battle with cancer. Throughout, he remained strong and courageous, loving his family and the Lord without ceasing until he was called home. Joe was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph D. Brubaker, Sr. and Helen McDanel Brubaker, his sister Joanne Brubaker, his brother John Robert Brubaker, and his wives, Shirley Milne Brubaker and Betty Dry Brubaker.

Joe’s proud legacy is his children and grandchildren and “Dad, Daddy, Pops, Poppy” will be greatly missed by everyone he leaves behind. Joe is survived by his children Carole Van Holbeck (Ken), John Brubaker (Cindylu), Joseph D. Brubaker, lll, Joanne Batchelor (Dave), and David Brubaker (Dawn); his grandchildren Lori Hendryx (Jamie), Julie Roberts (Jason), Justin Martino (Lyndsay), Victoria Martino, Holly Brubaker, Lizzie Brubaker, Joseph Van Holbeck (Sara), Eric Van Holbeck (Natalie), and Matt Van Holbeck; and great grandchildren Keegan Wescott, Addison Roberts, Hunter Van Holbeck, and Nolan Van Holbeck.

A Celebration of Life is scheduled at 11 am on April 8, 2023 at Cocoa Presbyterian Church located at 1404 Dixon Blvd, Cocoa, FL 32922. A reception will follow at the church. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Aging Matters of Brevard for their Meals on Wheels Program or to the Central Brevard Sharing Center.

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A Memorial Tree was planted for Joseph
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Beckman-Williamson - Viera/Rockledge
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