It is with great sorrow that we say goodbye to a truly wonderful man, Dr. Joseph Robinette, whose destiny was to pass away suddenly but peacefully, surrounded by his family, after a life filled with love, compassion and joyful experiences.
Joseph Arnold Robinette was born May 22, 1946, in Le Mars, the son of Arnold and Rosemary (Erdmann) Robinette.
He graduated from Gehlen High School in 1964. He graduated from the University of Iowa and the University of Iowa College of Medicine.
Joseph and Judy Wiltgen were married in Le Mars Sept. 3, 1966.
Joe was brought up with small-town, Midwestern values in Le Mars. He met his wife, Judy, in kindergarten and their 45 years of marriage saw them through medical school and their move to Tacoma where they raised their three children and watched their five grandchildren grow.
Joe's medical career in Washington began at MAMC and continued on to private practice at Stork Associates and the GYFT Clinic.
Joe touched the lives of many through his 33-year career as an OB-Gyn-Fertility specialist. We think of the countless babies that he helped bring into the world through obstetrics and fertility, and the hands that comforted and healed so many over the years. He was greatly loved and admired for his ability to truly listen and treat the whole person.
He inspired trust and loyalty in his peers, friends, co-workers and patients.
Joe was also committed to caring for the under-served of the community, volunteering for the past several years at Neighborhood Clinic, a free walk-in clinic for those unable to access or afford medical care.
Joe loved his work, the outdoors, traveling, golfing, writing and playing music, spending time with family and friends, and being a constant companion to Judy (and he sure could "cut-a-rug"). He was a kind, bright, humble and courageous husband, father and grandfather -- a gentle, quiet soul.
We will always feel his presence in the legacy of loving and giving that he left with us.
Survivors include his wife, Judy; a son, Jeffrey and Michelle Robinette of Tacoma, Wash.; two daughters, Melissa and Donald Sloan of Moses Lake, Wash., and Katie Robinette of Seattle, Wash.; five grandchildren; his mother, Rosemary Robinette of Le Mars; a brother, John of Le Mars; three sisters, Rosalie and Jerry Nicoson and Roberta and Myles Kass, all of Le Mars, and Barbara Robinette of Allen, Texas.
He was preceded in death by his father, Arnold Robinette in 2000, and a sister, Beverly Cockrell in 2010.
A "celebration of his life" was held Thursday July 7, at the Fircrest Country Club in Tacoma.