In honor of longtime Buildings and Grounds employee F. Joe Tandle Jr., who passed away on July 28, the American flag on the HWS campus was flown at half-mast on Wednesday, Aug. 3. Tandle was a Vietnam Veteran who served in the U.S. Army, 101st Airborne Division, from 1970 to 1972, and was the recipient of several awards including the National Defense Service Medal for meritorious service in the Vietnam War.
A mass was held on Aug. 3 at St. Francis De Sales Church in Geneva. Following the church service, Tandle was given full military honors at the church.
“It is with great admiration for his service to our country, our campus and the greater Geneva community that we will lower the flag in Joe’s honor on Wednesday,” said President Mark D. Gearan earlier in the week. “His loss will be felt by his many friends, colleagues and family remembers.”
Tandle worked as a plumber-pipefitter from 1972 to 2011, for many area contractors as well as the VA Hospital in Canandaigua for eight years, and spent the past 16 years of his career working for Sodexo at Hobart and William Smith. He was especially proud that his niece, Samantha Tandle ’10, graduated from William Smith and is pursuing a degree in veterinary science at Cornell University this fall.
“As a veteran of the Vietnam War, he served his country with great honor,” said friend and co-worker Ed Collins. “Joe is surely going to be missed by our department. Joe was an employee, co-worker, veteran of war and most of all, a friend.”
Tandle volunteered in the community, serving as a coach for Geneva T-Ball, Phelps Little League, and Geneva Little League, where he coached nine Little League All-Star teams, including a team that placed third in the New York State finals in 2002. He loved baseball and played in the Geneva Men’s Show Pitch League from 1988 to 2004.
He is survived by three children, Janelle (Joseph) DiMartino of Amherst, N.Y., Matthew (Sarah) Tandle of Baldwinsville, N.Y., and Jenna Tandle of Geneva; grandson, Anthony Joseph DiMartino; father, Francis J. “Sonny” Tandle Sr. of Geneva; brother, Terry (Carol) Tandle of Geneva; sisters, Joan Tandle and Joyce Tandle, both of Geneva, Patricia (Wade) Dutcher of Phelps, and Laurie (Daniel) Margeson of Waterloo.
Online condolences for the family may be sent to www.palmfh.com