Notorious prankster gets comedic sendoff with hilarious obituary

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — A notorious prankster gets a comedic sendoff in an obituary from his family Tuesday.

Joe Heller of Essex passed away Sunday, but his family got the last laugh when they wrote his obituary.

The Hartford Courant article tells the story of Heller’s life from youth through old age, liberally sprinkled with puns, sarcasm, and good-natured ribbing at Heller’s expense.

Heller’s family told of his early life that Joe deliberately named his dog “Fart” so that his mother would have to yell the name throughout the neighborhood if ever the dog wandered away.

Of Heller’s relationship with his wife, the family wrote:

“He met the love of his life, Irene, who was hoodwinked into thinking he was a charming individual with decorum. Boy, was she ever wrong. Joe embarrassed her daily with his mouth and choice of clothing. To this day, we do not understand how he convinced our mother, an exceedingly proper woman and a pillar in her church, to sew and create the colorful costumes and props which he used for his antics.”

– Joe Heller, Obituary, The Hartford Courant

After he retired, Joe was known to be a “frequent shopper at the Essex Dump and he left his family with a house full of crap, 300 lbs of birdseed, and dead houseplants that they have no idea what to do with.”

His family mused on Heller’s frequent later-years napping habits by saying, “There wasn’t a road, restaurant, or friend’s house in Essex that he didn’t fall asleep on or in. There wasn’t an occasion too formal or an event too dour that Joe didn’t interrupt with is apnea and voluminous snoring.”

To those attending the services, the family encourages everyone to dress comfortably and “don the most inappropriate T-Shirt that you are comfortable being seen in public with as Joe often did.” 

You can read the entire obituary here.

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