On the afternoon of Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, Joseph (Joe) Anthony Glenski was greeted by his beloved wife at Heaven's gates.
Joe was born on Nov. 30, 1929, in St. Joseph, to Francis and Anna (Wrinkle) Glenski.
At a young age, Joe found his passion for community pharmacy after working for his Aunt Helen, founder and owner of Helen Wrinkle Pharmacy in St. Joseph. After graduating from Christian Brothers in 1947, Joe went on to pursue a pharmacy degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC). He joined the Naval Reserves while in college and went on to graduate in 1951. He then returned to Helen Wrinkle Pharmacy to help with the management and administration of the store.
Helen and Joe truly led by example and instilled the desire in many young men and women in the St. Joseph area to become health professionals, including many of Joe's own children. Helen then passed management of the family pharmacy over to Joe, where he continued caring for generations of families in the southside of St. Joseph for over six decades. Joe earned a 50-year Pharmacy License Certificate from the Missouri Board of Pharmacy for his work in the field. The Glenski family also went on to receive the first UMKC Alumni Legacy Award in 1998, which honored the family for their outstanding service to the professional community and their attendance at the university for multiple generations.
Joe established a tremendous heritage in the profession of pharmacy. However, he would always tell you that success of the family pharmacy belonged to that of his Aunt Helen. Joe said he ran his business with the philosophy of treating each customer the same, regardless of who they were, where they came from, their race or wealth. Joe treated everyone with the same respect, which is a moral he instilled in his children and grandchildren.
While Joe had an impressive career, what he will be remembered for most is his devotion to his family. In 1942, he was introduced to the love of his life, Donna Mae Weddle. They met at the age of 13 at the South Park softball field and were inseparable ever since. They wed on Jan. 27, 1951, in St. Joseph, and were married for 66 years. Everything Joe did, he did for "his Donna Mae." They dedicated each day to raising their nine children together and then later in life spent weekends hand-in-hand, square dancing in each other's arms. After Donna passed a few years ago, Joe's devotion continued as he decorated the walls of his home with countless photos and memories of his time with Donna. He was still sharing stories of his Donna Mae up until the day he passed.
Joe was kind, generous and dependable. As a lifelong member of the Cathedral of St. Joseph, he always kept his faith close. Joe taught his children to accept life's blessings and challenges with grace, no matter what God had in store for them. He showed the importance of hard work and how to enjoy life's simplest pleasures. He loved puzzles, nature walks, bingo and playing cards with his family. He even hand-built grandfather clocks for each of his children and grandchildren. He always made the holidays special for his family and never forgot a birthday. He was not only a wonderful father, but also an exemplary grandparent to each of his grandchildren, so it was truly fitting that God would reward Joe with his entrance into Heaven's gates on National Grandparents Day.
Joe was preceded in death by his true love, Donna Mae, whom he is now square dancing with again. He was also preceded in death by: his parents; his Aunt Helen; his brothers Frank, James (Jim) and John; his sisters, Zoe, Sophie and Betty; his daughter, Patricia Ellen Glenski; grandson, Jamie Joseph (JJ) Pawlowski; great-grandson, Gabriel Beasley; and great-granddaughter, Addilea Swift.
Joe is survived by: his nine children, James (Jim) Glenski (Christine), Mary Jane Brown (Bob), Sharon Swift (Mike), Jean Pawlowski (Jim), Janet Peterson (Bob), Robert Glenski (Elaine), Carol Glenski, Thomas (Tom) Glenski (Melissa) and Roger Glenski (Chris). He is also survived by 20 grandchildren, 27 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.
The family will be holding a private ceremony, however, there will be a public viewing beginning at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 17, at Meierhoffer Funeral Home & Crematory in St. Joseph.
The family requests, in lieu of flowers, that memorial contributions be made to either Bishop LeBlond High School or to the Glenski Family Scholarship at the UMKC School of Pharmacy in memory of Joe Glenski. As published in the St. Joseph News-Press.