On Saturday October 15th, 2022, Joseph (Joe) Earl Cullison, 59 of Leonardtown, MD left this earthly world after a recent sepsis infection that he was being treated for at MedStar St. Mary's Hospital, Leonardtown, Maryland.
Joe was born to late John Norman Cullison, Jr. and Brenda Jean Jarboe Cullison Guy on August 5th, 1963, as their third child. He was delivered at the hospital by nurse Ellen Hewitt as the doctor had told Brenda, “Go to the hospital, and I'll be there after I have a cup of coffee." Joe was in such a hurry to enter this world that Joe didn't wait for the doctor to arrive. Joe was raised in the Catholic faith after being baptized at Holy Face Catholic Church, Great Mills, Maryland. Joe attended mass with his family every Sunday and later served as an acolyte (altar server) through his high school years.
As a small boy, Joe was very close to his Cullison grandparents; the apple of their eyes and could do no wrong. He would spend many days with them while his siblings were in school and his parents were working; his dad the Naval Air Test Center, Patuxent River, MD and his mom working as a substitute teacher.
Joe enjoyed the annual family trip to the mountains. Over the years with his family and he visited most of the Shenandoah National Parkway and the Blue Ridge Parkway. In Tennessee he panned for rubies and rode on the Tweetsie Railroad, In West Virginia he toured a coal mine and rode Cass Scenic Railroad. He visited the headwater of the Potomac River. In the Smokies he scared his mom to near death when he took a notion to play with a bear cub that wondered into the campground and was separated from its mother. (Luckily, he was snatched back by a Park Ranger and didn't have a playdate with the cub, nor a meeting with its mother.) In North Carolina he visited the Cherokee Reservation, and Clingmans Dome. In Pennsylvania he visited the Gettysburg Battlefield and the Hershey Candy Factory. In Kentucky he visited Mammoth Cave where he saw the blind fish, and Boonesborough. In Virginia he visited Bush Gardens in Williamsburg, Mabry Mill and Luray Caverns. He enjoyed the hikes while camping, as well as being in the great outdoors. He also enjoyed the annual family trip to King's Dominion. He liked the roller coasters, but he loved the rides that turned him upside down, like the Apple Turnover.
Growing up in the shadows of his older brother he was always wanting to do what Mike was doing. He followed behind Mike as a cub scout and a boy scout. He enjoyed hiking and camping with the scouts. While in Boy Scouts, he joined his troop to backpack 20 miles of the Appalachian Trail. Over his summers he worked with Mike as they worked as laborers for Retired Admiral Johnson, Retired Captain Thurmond and Retired Dr. Smith doing all types of chores.
He joined his dad and brother along with his dad’s best friend Mike Gerek to fish from Spring to late Fall. They trolled the Patuxent River, the Potomac River and parts of the Chesapeake Bay. When his dad bought a boat, it was one of Joe's chores to get it ready for the trip as well as getting to cleaned up after being out fishing for the day.
When he was old enough, like Mike, he joined the Second District Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad where he was awarded "Rookie of the Year" for his service and dedication. He would volunteer at the weeklong carnival working the boat ride, the merry-go-round or the swings, or wherever he was needed.
Joe attended Little Flower School, Piney Point Elementary, Esperanza Middle School and Ryken High School. He graduated from Ryken in May 1981.
While in high school he had an after-school job working at Jane's Chuck Wagon where he would wash, clean and restock the trucks.
After graduating high school, he joined the U.S. Army where he trained in helicopter repair. He was stationed at Fort McClellan and Fort Rucker Alabama. After his discharge from the Army, he decided he was going to be a waterman and purchased a working boat "Foot Loose." Unfortunately, that year the bay froze and ended his life as a waterman. So, Joe sold the boat and went to work at Stuart Petroleum and then the Harry Lundeberg School of Seamanship. Joe's love of the water lead him to attend the school of seamanship and become a Merchant Marine Boatswain's Mate. As a Merchant Marine he was assigned the "ro-ro ship" that docked in Dundalk Terminal of the Port of Baltimore. Everything shipped on the ship rolled on some type of wheel, It was a sight just to sit and watch what rolled on or off the ship. That ship would take him on a cruise down the Atlantic Coast, up the Mississippi River, then over to the Mediterranean Sea. When he was assigned "the Ranger", a container ship, his cruises took him down along the coast of South America, stopping at many ports. During Desert Storm, Joe was on a Merchant Marine ship carrying supplies to the Middle East, which gave him the opportunity to travel down the Suez Canal.
When Joe decided to give up the water, he went to work at Taylor Rental. There he worked on the equipment and even was sent to attend the school for repair of Briggs and Straton Engines. While working there he came in contact with the St. Mary's Metropolitan Commission (Metcom), and later applied there for a job. Working there he had various jobs over the more than 20 years. In the evening he attended Charles County Community College, where he completed a class in AutoCad Drawing, which lead to his work with drawing the layouts of Metcom's pipes. At the time of his death, he was a Senior Engineering Technician with Metcom.
When he wasn't working Joe enjoyed cooking. He became quite proficient on the grill, dehydrator, smoker and later the air fryer. He mastered his stuffed ham. He loved his fresh oysters and crabs.
Joe is survived by his fiance Sharon Sisco of Callaway, MD, his siblings Michael Patrick Cullison (Anita Lorraine) of North Charleston, SC, and Christine Marie Cullison of Great Mills, MD; stepsiblings Virginia Quade of Bushwood, MD, Deborah Burroughs of Hollywood, MD, Robin Lawrence (George) of Chaptico, MD, and Emanuel Guy, Jr. of Hollywood; uncles Benedict Paul Jarboe of Piney Point, MD; John Parron Jarboe (Maryann) of Wildewood, FL, and Robert Neal Jarboe (Nancy) of Myrtle Beach, SC. and aunt Beverly Jarboe of Hughesville, MD. and his neices and nephews Olivia Cullison, Elijah Cullison, Allison Cullison, and Dylan Cullison of Charleston, SC.
In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by his stepfather Emanual Greenwell Guy SR, paternal grandparents John Norman Cullison, Sr. and Margaret Mary Combs Cullison, his maternal grandparents Parran Benedict Jarboe and Rita Alyce Tennyson Jarboe, his stepsiblings Dennis Guy, and Lisa Guy, his stepbother-in-laws Frank Quade and James Burroughs, and his nieces and nephew Rebecca Lorraine Cullison, Jason Long, Sunni Lee Guy and Leighann Burroughs Tuemler.
The family will receive friends for a memorial service on Friday, October 28, 2022 at 1:00 PM in the Mattingley-Gardiner Funeral Home, Leonardtown, MD, with Deacon Bill Kyte officiating. Interment will be private.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be the Second District Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad. and Lexington Park Volunteer Rescue Squad, both who came to his aid.