Joseph James Tornatore was born in Canastota, NY, Dec. 18, 1923 to Lena Tornatore (De Mauro) and James Tornatore. His 2 sisters, mother, father, and 2 wives, Pearl Nelson and Clair Tornatore, predeceased him. He is survived by 3 stepchildren, Susan Anderson, Eric Anderson, David Nelson; granddaughter Sarah Nelson; and 2 nephews, Howard and James Hunt, and close friends Perry Metcalf, Kathleen Turner, and Josephine Bryant as well as his friends at the Evangelical Free Church, Green Valley, AZ.
Joe graduated from Canastota High School where he wrestled and played basketball. After high school, he entered the Army Air Corp, where he learned to fly, and was based in occupied Japan. He received an honorable discharge in 1947, and returned home to enter college where he became an accountant, as well as learning Spanish. Hired by ASARCO mining where he worked as a traveling accountant in North American, Mexico, Central America, and South America.
While on vacation he met and married Pearl Nelson. They owned an airfield together and traveled around the world.
After Pearl's death, Joe met Clair Rothenbuhler. They married at ages 70 and 72 on August 1, 1998, going camping for their honeymoon. Clair died in January of 2010, and Joe continued to live in their home until his death on Sept. 21, 2020. They are together again, organizing and tidying to their hearts' content.
In lieu of flowers the family requests a donation be made to the Honor Flight of Southern Arizona. Joe joined an Honor Flight in 2016, and had the trip of a lifetime, he felt so honored by all the folks he encountered.
A memorial will be held at the Evangelical Free Church in Green Valley on Oct. 19 at 10 am..
Adair Funeral Home is handling arrangements.