Cover photo for Joseph B. Hollen's Obituary
Joseph B. Hollen Profile Photo
1943 Joseph 2020

Joseph B. Hollen

May 2, 1943 — December 7, 2020


Joseph “Joe” B. Hollen

Family Man -

Joseph “Joe” B. Hollen, age 77, of Harrisburg, and formerly of Mechanicsburg, passed away peacefully at Arden Courts of Susquehanna on Monday, December 7, 2020.  Joe was born on Sunday, May 2, 1943, in Ashville, PA to the late Charles Ernest Hollen, Sr. and Mary Olive (Miller) Hollen.  In addition to his parents, Joe is preceded in death by his infant brother, Robert Hollen, and his sisters:  Agnes Wyland, Rita Adams, and Ella Dietrick.

Joe’s survivors include his wife of 45 years, Diane Lynn (Westhafer) Hollen; his three children and four grandchildren: Philip “Phil” Hollen, his wife Allison, and their son, Elliott, of Etters, PA, Lindsay M. Hood, her husband Joshua, and their daughters, Emma, Olivia, and Julia, of Gardners, PA, and John F. Hollen of Mechanicsburg; his seven siblings: Charles Hollen, Jr., Mildred Boldizar, Grace Miller, Ethel Audie, Viola Mazur, Mary Chverchko, and Sister Ruth, RSM; as well as many nieces and nephews.

Joe graduated from Cambria Heights High School as part of the class of 1961.  Upon graduation, Joe joined the U.S. Air Force and served in the Vietnam War. Joe later earned an associate’s degree in electrical engineering at Pennsylvania State University.  He worked as a network equipment engineer at Bell Telephone of PA, which later became Verizon, for almost 40 years until he retired in 2005.  Joe was a longtime member of West Shore Evangelical Free Church in Mechanicsburg, where he volunteered in children’s ministry, as an usher, and a member of the greeting team.  He also enjoyed his fellowship group and Sunday school class.  Joe was active in the church’s Boys Brigade and Cub Scouts with his sons when they were young, and they remember him competitively engineering pinewood derby racecars.  He also coached both sons in soccer.  Joe happily donated his math tutoring talents at The Nativity School of Harrisburg; where he often attended his students sporting events, and they affectionately called him “Mr. Joe”.

Born in the farmhouse and raised on his family’s farm, Joe developed a knack for identifying plants, trees, flowers, and birds.  He spent much of his leisure time outdoors, tending to the landscaping, gardening, and birdfeeders; and his family fondly recalls Joe wearing his special garden “sombrero”.  He had an affinity for geology and found pleasure in taking care of his fish and aquariums.  Joe was an avid Pittsburgh Steelers and Penn State football fan, as well as a classical music and jazz enthusiast.  He delighted in trying and sharing new craft beers with Phil, John, and Josh.  Most of all, Joe was a family man and proud, hands-on grandfather.  Joe’s family will miss the talkative, outgoing, funny, gentle, and kindest man they ever knew.

Joe’s family will be remembering his life privately.  Interment in Mechanicsburg Cemetery will be at the family’s convenience. Cremation was private.

The family sends their most heartfelt thanks to everyone at Arden Courts of Susquehanna and Heartland Hospice who so lovingly cared for Joe during his illness.

Contributions in celebration of Joe’s life can be made to Bethesda Mission, P.O. Box 3041, Harrisburg, PA 17105,; or to Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, 3908 Corey Road, Harrisburg, PA 17109,

Joe’s family has entrusted his care to Buhrig Funeral Home & Crematory in Mechanicsburg, (717) 766-3421.  Read Joe’s full obituary, view his memorial video and portrait, offer condolences and sympathy, share stories and memories, upload photographs and videos, light a candle and sign his official guest book by visiting

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