"Fun on the River"
Joseph J. Dougherty
It was a cold and stormy February night in Detroit (1939) when Joe was born. Joe was 7 years old in 1947 when his mother ran with her two boys from an abusive husband to Florida, where they would be out of his reach. It was then that Joe vowed that he would never treat a woman like that.
Growing up in Daytona Beach was the best. This area offered everything that two boys could want the ocean, the beach, a river for fishing, and the woods for hunting and camping.
As a young man, Joe completed high school and was active in the drama club. He won the best actor award in the state of Florida in 1958, the year he graduated. Joe took up scuba diving to explore Florida’s underwater caves and offshore reefs. Then Joe and a couple of diving buddies went to Cuba. A week later, Fidel Castro rolled into Havana with the full rebel army. They were glad to get out of there.
Joe took two years of college before the open road called. He and his best friend took off in Joe’s MG sports car, heading for California. This trip lasted three months. Joe decided it was time to get serious about life when he came back. He started an import auto parts business. He met Madalyn, and he knew she was the girl for him. He later sold the auto parts store and started working for Southern Bell Telephone Co. as an account executive for thirteen years.
He was successful in opening the largest fireplace store in sixty-nine counties for thirty years. Joe is now 81 years old and retired in Ormond Beach, Florida.