Joe Tully Florence Weiss, 88, passed away with his family at his side on Monday, May 20, 2013.
Tully was born August 18th, 1924, to Nathan and Adelyn Florence in Dallas, Texas. His father died when he was three years old, and Adelyn married Milton Weiss when Tully was nine. Milton adopted Tully and his younger brother, Bill, and was a great father to them.
Tully’s college education at the University of Texas was interrupted by World War II. He enlisted immediately after his 18th birthday – fearful, like so many young men at the time, that he might miss out on the action. A John Wayne movie about the Marines convinced him that was the branch where he could have the greatest adventure and best serve his country.
He was not disappointed! Tully served on the battleship USS New Mexico in battles throughout the Pacific. He operated artillery in bombardments from the Attu Campaign to Makin Island, Ebeye Island, Kwajalein, Taroa Island, Malolap Atoll, Notje Island, Wotje Atoll, Kavieng, Tinian Island, Guam (twice), Rota Island and Saipan. At the age of 21 he was sent to officers’ candidate school at Quantico, Virginia, graduating as a Second Lieutenant. While stateside, the war ended and he moved back to Dallas to finish his education at Southern Methodist University and begin his lifelong career in the ready to wear business with Goldring, Inc.
On a blind date in March, 1950, Tully met and flipped his lid over a pretty stewardess named Anna Lee (Tootie) Richards. They were married that October and enjoyed a few months of civilian life before he was called back into active duty for the Korean conflict. They moved to Camp Pendleton for a year and a half, then returned to Dallas where their family soon grew to five with the arrival of their sons, Tom and Bill, and their daughter, Jana. Despite the fact that he was never called back to the battlefield again, Tully kept advancing in his military career. After he got word in the mail that he had been promoted to Captain, Tootie convinced him to resign his commission permanently so he could stay home and help her raise the kids.
Tully’s career in retail took the family to Phoenix for two years, and finally to Colorado Springs in 1964, where they all settled in for good. He managed Kaufman’s, a popular clothing store downtown, and oversaw the addition of a second Kaufman’s in the Citadel Mall. He retired in the mid 1970’s.
His community involvement included a term with the city planning commission, where he advocated for the creation of the Pikes Peak Center. He enjoyed several decades with the Pikes Peak Sertoma Club, (now the Pikes Peak Club), lunching with them every Thursday until the week he passed. He also belonged to the Argonauts, lunching monthly with them as well. Tully was involved with the founding of the Citadel Bank and the Garden of the Gods Bank in Colorado Springs, and Park State Bank in Woodland Park.
Tully loved fishing and hunting. When his company offered him a promotion to New York City, he opted to stay in Colorado Springs, an hour from great fishing at the family cabin near Lake George. He hunted deer and wild turkey every fall in Texas, bringing home delectable venison sausage. In his retirement he spent many hours fishing, golfing and hunting. He and Tootie enjoyed lots of bridge and also travelled extensively. Throughout their life together, they made and kept many dear friends.
Tully is survived by Tootie; his sons: Tom of Colorado Springs; and Bill (Becky) of Manitou Springs; his daughter: Jana (Mark) Vigilante of Colorado Springs; Thad and Ariel Weiss, both of Denver; and three nephews: Guy (Danna) Moore of Colorado Springs; Tully (Kalyn) Weiss of Dallas, Texas; and Brad Moore of Perrin, Texas.
A memorial service is planned for 4:30 on Saturday, June 1, 2013 at the Shrine of Remembrance, 1730 East Fountain Boulevard, Colorado Springs.
Memorials may be made to the Lake George Volunteer Fire Department, P.O. Box 281, Lake George, Colorado 80827.
Tully will be greatly missed by his family, his many friends and neighbors, and just about everybody who knew him. Everyone except the fish.