Joseph Oscar Mader, 58 passed away on November 6, 2021 at Sacred Heart Hospital in Spokane, Washington from multi-organ system failure. He was born on November 21, 1962 in Cottonwood to Fred (Boots) and Ingrid Mader. He was the eldest of nine born in an 11 ½ year span. He took his role of big brother very seriously. He led many childhood projects that included fort building, endless baseball, football, and basketball games in the yard, the field behind the house and the barn fondly known as the “Rocket Dome”. He would mastermind the building of many hay forts and gather his siblings and many neighborhood kids to tell spooky stories. He crafted many carts that he would attach to our Shetland pony to pull us around the property. He really loved to build things and even constructed a baseball diamond above the field at the house with a full backstop. Our dad fostered a love of baseball upon all nine of us children and we spent many hours of our childhood honing our skills and love of the game under Joe’s guidance and leadership. He was very athletic and enjoyed teaching us every aspect of the game. He was definitely the leader of the group. He loved being the “oldest” and took his role very serious.
He graduated from Prairie High School in 1981 where he played football, basketball, and baseball. He went on to play baseball at LCSC following high school graduation. He graduated from LCSC in 1986 with a degree in business management. He worked many construction jobs and also in the oil fields in North Dakota and then lived in Lewiston before moving to Pasco, Washington where he went to work for Bi-State Siding.
Joe’s hobbies after college included playing summer league softball where he excelled as a first baseman and a heavy hitter earning him the nickname of “Big Timber”. He loved the friendships and the competition of summer league where he and his teammates won numerous championships. When his nieces and nephews began playing sports, he would travel wherever he could to watch them play. He also would travel many miles to watch his siblings coach various high school sports, and yes, he always had a little advice after every game, “you know what I mean?” Joe also had a deep love for the great outdoors which included numerous hunting trips with his brother Lonnie.
His daughter Justina will be forever grateful for the many memories her and her father made together, from annual Mariner baseball games, road trips where they bonded over their shared love of music, along with their long talks about politics and life. Justina loved her dads’ stories and huge generous heart.
He married Sandra Aguirre on February 17, 1991 in Reno, Nevada. They had their only child Justina Kathleen Mader on May 28, 1991. Justina was the light of his life and like her dad is the oldest of the Mader grandchildren. Sandra passed away on September 12, 2001.
Joe is survived by his daughter Justina Mader (Robert Leatherman), his mother Ingrid of Cottonwood, brothers Lyle and Greg (Rhonda) of Lewiston, Kenney (Teresa Hill), and Travis (Jeanie Burns) of Cottonwood, sisters, Tina (Doug) Ulmer of Kooskia, Stephanie (Tomas) Hiler of Meridian, Lori Mader (Mike Wassmuth) of Cottonwood, and bonus sister Janice (Jerry Hamilton) of Juliaetta, Idaho and sister-in-law Amy Mader. His nephews and nieces, Garhett, Kyndahl, and Madison Ulmer, Alexis and Addie Hiler, Dylan (Savanna) and Karson Mader, Samantha, Graydon, and Savana Mader, and great-niece Brynlee Mader.
He was preceded in death by his maternal grandparents Oscar and Nellie Palm, his paternal grandparents Joseph and Mary Mader. His dad Boots Mader and his brother Lonnie Mader as well as many other loving family members.
The funeral and rosary service will be held on Saturday at St. Mary’s Catholic Church located at 508 Church St, Cottonwood, Idaho 83522. Rosary will start at 10 a.m. and funeral to follow at 10:30 a.m. Burial will take place at Cottonwood Catholic Cemetery. Arrangements are under the direction of the Blackmer Funeral Home, Grangeville. Send condolences to the family to blackmerfuneralhome.com.
In lieu of flowers for his love of sports, a memorial contribution may be made to the Prairie High School Athletic Fund.
We will miss you dearly; rest in peace, Joseph Oscar Mader.