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Visitation: 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.,Sunday, April 18, 2021

Location: Weymouth Funeral Home

Funeral Service: 2:00 p.m.,Sunday, April 18, 2021

Location: Weymouth Funeral Home

Joseph Rufus King, 83, died Monday, April 12, 2021.  He was the youngest of 5 children born to Margaret and John King and was a lifelong resident of Hampton. Joe was known to family and friends as Putty or Putty Red. His family lived in the Garden City area of Hampton and he attended Phenix High School where he excelled in football. He continued his football career at Norfolk State. Joe was an entrepreneur from his early childhood and learned the value of hard work and honesty from his Uncle Joe and Aunt Mary, with whom he lived for several years as a young child. During the Vietnam era he was drafted. He subsequently enlisted in the U.S. Army, where he quickly advanced through the ranks. He received a commission, attended Officers Candidate School, and eventually retired as a Lieutenant Colonel after 24 years of combined active and reserve service. Following his active duty in the Army he operated Import Auto King and was active in the political life of Hampton. He served on the Hampton School Board and was a champion for disabled and handicapped children, a cause dear to his heart due to the fact that his daughter, Candace, was born with cerebral palsy. Ever the optimist, he ran unsuccessful campaigns for City Council and the House of Delegates. One of his proudest accomplishments was assisting his dear friend, Mary Christian, in her successful campaign to be elected the first African American female delegate from Hampton. Uncle Putty was loved and looked up to by his many nieces and nephews and is remembered especially by some of his nephews for giving them their first jobs. Joe always had great vision but maybe not so much follow through, often leaving the details to others. He never lacked for confidence in what he could accomplish.

Joe’s beloved daughter, Candace preceded him in death in August 2020. He is survived by his wife, Judy Carey; his children, Martin King, Janelle Sokolowich (Michael), Letitia Branch (Eric) and Brian Bowers (Carmen); his sister, Joan Evans and mother of his daughters, Lillian Smith; 9 grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

The family will receive friends from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m., on Sunday, April 18, 2021 at Weymouth Funeral Home. Funeral Services will be held at 2:00 p.m., on Sunday, April 18, 2021 at Weymouth Funeral Home with Military Honors. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Citizens Unit of the Boys & Girls Club of Virginia Peninsula, 1815 Shell Road, Hampton, VA 23661.

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#1 Linda Hicks 2021-04-24 00:20
Rest well Uncle Putty. So sorry I could not make the funeral. I remember our years at 702 Teach St. You were kind to me through out my life. Rest well.
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