Obituary of Joseph Carson Rattz
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Joseph Carson Rattz, 79, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, July 18, 2022. Born in Lexington, NC, on August 15, 1942, he was a son of the late William Otis Rattz and the late Mary Ella Gray Rattz Jones. Shortly thereafter, the family moved to Greensboro, NC, and in 1960, he graduated from Bessemer High School. In December 1960, he began active duty with the U. S. Navy where he was trained in missile fire control for the Talos Guided Missile System, the Navy’s first surface-to-air long range missile system. Soon, he became Leading Petty Officer of the Tracking Radar on the Navy’s second Talos ship (Little Rock) and later, the more advanced seventh Talos ship (Chicago). He served eight years on active duty and two years in the reserves. During his career, he served aboard Beaufort, Kidd, Galveston and Dixie, and his major assignments were aboard Little Rock, Chicago and Service School Command, Great Lakes. In 1962, he was awarded the Navy Expeditionary Medal for service in Cuba and engaging in operations against an armed opposing force. In 1966, he was awarded the Vietnam Service Medal for combat operations at PIRAZ Station, a sea location about 10 miles offshore of Haiphong, North Vietnam, and for 2 missions into North Vietnam. During his service, he was awarded several other medals and Letters of Commendation. On March 27, 1963, he and Josie Monterey Black (Rattz), married in Waukegan, IL and continued on a journey that would last for over half a century. They were parents of one son, Joseph Jr. (Joey). On January 3, 2014, Josie passed from earth to heaven. In 1967, Joe and Josie founded Monterey Enterprises (wholesale jobbers) in Illinois. They also co-owned Townhouse Realty of Indiana, Inc., a firm owning and renting Townhouses in the area of the Indianapolis 500. They also owned other real estate in the communities surrounding Chicago and Indianapolis. In Indiana, Joe (a licensed pilot) was also employed at the FAA’s Indianapolis Air Route Traffic Control Center as a controller separating aircraft, both military and civilian, in the states of Ohio, Indiana and the surrounding areas. In 1977, he was awarded a Letter of Commendation for “saving” an aircraft in distress [low on fuel and trapped on top of an overcast layer]. In 1980, he and his family moved into their custom built lake house on Lake Marion. Eventually, the family moved to Sumter where they lived for more than 28 years. Joe was an inactive member of Crosswell Baptist Church and a former member of First Baptist. He was a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), the American Legion and the National Association of Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE) and held membership in several other organizations. Survivors are his son, Joseph C. Rattz, Jr. (Vickey) Alpharetta, GA; brothers, Curtis R. Jones, Greensboro, NC, and Wayne O. Rattz Inverness, FL; his sister, Billie Rattz Murray, Tampa, FL; his brothers-in-law, Jim Sheets, McGrady, NC, and Conway E. Black, Sumter; his sister-in-law, Claire Black Justice Pace (Phil) of Sumter. He was preceded in death by sisters, Judy Rattz Jones Sheets and Sheila Rattz Fleming Smith, and brother, Charles H. Jones, Jr. Graveside services will be held at 2 P.M. Thursday in the Sumter Cemetery with military honors. Personal condolences to the family may be given after the graveside service. Memorials may be made to the church, charity or organization of one’s choice. On-line condolences may be sent to www.sumterfunerals.com The family would like to publicly thank Ms. Wendy Felder and her caregivers at Carolina Caregivers who provided excellent support and care for a number of years. Elmore Hill McCreight Funeral Home & Crematory, 221 Broad Street, Sumter, is in charge of the arrangements (803-775-9386).