Joseph E. Correa Inducted 2005 - Class of 1971
Besides a lot of good memories and meeting his future wife at Woodward, there is one big reason that Woodward High School was so important to Joe Correa. He was the first in his family to attend the same high school for four years. Joe was raised in a military family. His Dad, Joe, Sr., had a thirty-four year career in the Navy and Coast Guard. The family traveled up and down the east coast from Boston (Joe, Sr.'s home) to Miami, Florida, Groton, Connecticut, North Carolina, and Norfolk, Virginia. By the time Joe was ready for high school, his Dad had suffered an electrocution, transferred into the Coast Guard, and was offered his pick of Great Lake stations. He picked Toledo and brought the family here.
While at Woodward, Joe did two things that turned out to be of major importance in his life. He met Debbie Chevalier and worked summers for Frank Butler. Joe and Debbie were more than high school sweethearts. Joe was Debbie's only boyfriend and Debbie was Joe's only girlfriend. As the graduation ceremony ended in June 1971, Joe and Debbie walked out of different rows, but right
across from each other. They walked out of graduation together....and down the aisle in 1974. Joe remembers many wonderful teachers at Woodward, but particularly Miss Zemanski, his English teacher, who even attended their wedding. Joe also began working for Frank Butler in his home remodeling business. Joe went on for one year at UT as an education major, but really, he admits, "To play sports." He credits the coaches at Woodward with teaching him teamwork and a positive, never-give-up attitude.
Joe began his own business in 1974 by doing home remodeling and a lot of sub-contracting. He has maintained his North Toledo roots as the business grew and he often had to relocate as he ran out of room in one location after another. Debbie was working occasionally at their business when one day, in 1975, Joe was off on a hunting trip and she was in charge of the shop. The secretary told Debbie that she was going to quit the next day. Debbie's answer was that the secretary might as well quit today. Debbie took over the secretary's job and has been working fulltime at their business ever since. Currently, their business, ABC Seamless Siding is on Telegraph Road. The building that it occupies was one of Mayor Carty Finkbeiner's "Dirty Dozen" and Joe bought it at a sheriff’s sale. The siding business is a multimillion dollar business that ranks it in the Top 500 remodeling businesses in volume in the country every year and Joe also rents over half the building to other North Toledo businesses.
Joe and Debbie have a daughter Cortney that graduated from Tri-State University with a degree in criminal justice. Cortney married K.C. Fleitz last year and just gave Joe and Debbie their first grandchild, Easton Cole, on March 6, 2005.
Joe participated in a protest, of sorts, at Woodward. Jim Kregel, an outstanding WHS football player from the Class of 1970, bet Joe $20 that he wouldn't wear a skirt to school to protest girls being given the privilege of wearing dress slacks to school. Joe wore a skirt to school and was summoned to the Assistant Principal's office. Mr. Geis asked him to change into pants, but since there was nothing in the dress code that prohibited guys from wearing skirts, Joe got to keep the skirt on and won the $20.
When Joe was informed of his election into the Hall of Fame he wrote in his biography, "I am a very private person that likes to do for others, but I don't like attention brought to me." A good example of Joe's "doing for others" is his work in recent years for Andy Toth. Andy is a retired Woodward math and auto shop teacher. Andy suffered a stroke and many debilitating complications. Joe has been a leader in fund-raising money to pay for all the important things that insurance just doesn't cover. He was part of the committee that mailed over 13,000 pieces of mail to our Woodward family seeking donations for Andy and also hosted a spaghetti dinner in Andy's behalf. The group also bought a house, refurbished it, sold it, and donated the profits to Andy. Part of the money was used to buy a handicapped equipped van. This generous group isn't finished yet. For many years, Joe has been a major supporter of Polar Bear 200, a reverse raffle that raises thousands of dollars for Woodward every year. Joe and his group are planning a reverse raffle to benefit Andy in May. When you drop by his table to congratulate him on being inducted tonight, he'd probably be happy to sell you a couple of reverse raffle tickets.