Joseph C. Hannigan, 89, passed away on Sept. 14, 2012, just two months shy of his 90th birthday, at Pine Ridge Extended Care Center, Pagosa Springs. Mr. Hannigan was born on Nov. 20, 1922, in Grand Junction, Colo., to Alva and Emily Hannigan. Mr. Hannigan was a graduate of Grand Junction Senior High School and Colorado Mesa University.
He volunteered to serve at the outbreak of World War II and entered the Army Air Corps, where he was stationed in San Diego, Calif., serving as a corporal with the 14th Fighter Control Squadron. His assignment involved controlling fighter interceptor aircraft using radar, a very new technology at that time.
While in San Diego, he met Carrie Lou McBride, from Marshall, Texas, who was assigned to Tonopah, Nev., as a private, serving as an administrative clerk in the Womens Army Corps. As the war wound down, they were married in June 1944. They had three children, Joseph Hannigan Jr, Kathryn (Hannigan) Salinger and Mick Hannigan.
Following his discharge after World War II, he began working in the accounting career field with Union Carbide Corporation and other companies within Colorado. His career took him to Grand Junction, Uravan, Colo. (now a ghost town and Superfund Site), then finally to Bishop, Calif., where he retired from Union Carbide.
His interests were many, including sports, camping and the outdoors, but above all, he loved music. He was an accomplished musician and played the saxophone and clarinet, specializing in the “big band” sounds. He played music from memory and delighted in the pleasure it brought others. He toured through southwest Colorado as a younger man, giving concerts in many locations with his band.
He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Carrie Lou (McBride) Hannigan, a resident of Pine Ridge Extended Care Center in Pagosa Springs; his three children, Joseph Hannigan Jr. and his wife Debbie of Pagosa Springs; Mick Hannigan and his wife Suzanne of Pasco, Wash.; and daughter Kathryn (Hannigan) Salinger of Rosamond, Calif.; six grand children: Michael Hannigan and his wife Stacey of Anchorage, Alaska; Marissa (Hannigan) Chiarella and her husband Brian of Colchester, Conn.; Andy Skaggs and his wife Teri, of Kirkland, Wash.; Thomas Skaggs and his wife Edna, of El Paso, Texas; Tracie Hannigan, of Manchester, Conn.; and Kevin Hannigan of Pasco, Wash.; five great-grandchildren, cousins, nieces, nephews and friends everywhere.
Mr. Hannigan will be deeply missed as a loving husband, father and friend. There will be no services.
In lieu of flowers, consider making a donation to the Pagosa Springs Senior Center, or remember Joe by simply taking a moment to say “hello” to someone who is somehow confined by health or circumstance.