VALE: JOE HURLEY
He was a fan; He had my guitar in his hands - and he was heading for the door. He could have walked off with it but he didn’t because he was more than a fan. He was a friend. He returned to the show and that was the beginning of a 30-year friendship.
It wasn’t just me he took under his wing. It was Fred, Wayne, Gary, Rock, Hiawatha, my folks, his family, and lots of others. He recorded the first two discs of the Sonic’s Rendezvous Band box set. He’s the one yelling loudest on all of our live recordings.
In the late ‘80s he had a terrible accident. He lost his right arm and called to tell me the story. It was so incredible I thought he was making it up but it was all too real. After that he learned to do things with his left hand that most people couldn’t do with three hands. He seemed to find it a challenge to be achieved.
Nothing could stop him from having a full life. He married Julie and had two beautiful sons, Matt and Jack. After my Dad died and my Mom needed extra care, Joe moved into our house and helped with the responsibility of providing 24-hour care. It wasn’t the first time he had taken on such a kind-hearted task. He had just finished taking care of another aging woman with no other means of support, until she passed on.
I know he’d be happy that the box is doing so well and that i still have the ’67 Tele that he returned to me. I’m pretty sure he has his own now and he and Fred are jammin’. -SCOTT MORGAN
A 17-year-old Joe Hurley (left) working with other young people.