Joseph Melvin Sweat was a man of character and enduring legacy. On July 13th, 1935, he was born to Melven Sweat and Florence Mary Ricord, in Heber, Utah. He peacefully departed from this world on October 28th, 2023 in Stansbury Park, Utah.
Joseph’s life included two significant love stories. On August 17th, 1962, he married the love of his life, Rita Annette Fredrickson, in Salt Lake City, Utah. They first crossed paths when Annette was in search of a horse trainer. As destiny would have it, their lives intertwined in the most unexpected way. Throughout their marriage they were inseparable. Joseph was lost after Annette’s death in 1992. Through service and family genealogy, he found love again and married Ruth Burr Brady on March 22nd, 1996. Joseph and Ruth spend many wonderful years together, until her death in 2012.
Joseph’s life was marked by his love for horses. He spent many hours with family and friends riding horses along trails far and wide. His affinity for horses was not just confined to recreational activities; it was a significant part of his life as well. Joseph was the proud owner of the Open Star Ranch. He served as the President of the Utah Appaloosa Horse Club and later served as National Director within the Appaloosa Horse Club.
Coupled with his passion for horses, Joseph loved exploring new places, hunting and camping with his family. As the kids matured, the focus for Joseph and Annette became miniature donkeys and mules.
Joseph served in the United States Air Force. He also had a long career with Hercules Aeropspace Division. Often, he was troubleshooting personnel, production and safety issues within the company.
Joseph is survived by his children Bonnie Sweat, Melven (Andrea) Sweat, David (Maria) Sweat; sister Anna (Tad) Spader; 17 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren; sisters-in-law Glenna Sweat and Carol Sweat; and many beloved family and friends.
Joseph was preceded in death by both his wives Rita Annette Sweat and Ruth Burr Brady Sweat; siblings Mary Lu Sweat, Rella Sweat Gandy, Delbert Sweat, Lewis Sweat, Raymond Sweat, Baby Girl Sweat, Marvin “Jim” Sweat, Gary Sweat, Robert “Bob” Sweat; and daughter-in-law Cory Saxey Sweat.
A viewing will be held on Sunday, November 5th from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at the Bayshore Ward, 5899 Bayshore Drive, Stansbury Park, UT.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, November 6th at 11:00 AM with a viewing from 9:30 to 10:45 AM at Larkin Sunset Gardens, 1950 E. Dimple Dell Rd. (10600 S.), Sandy. For those unable to attend, services will be streamed via Zoom. Please visit www.larkinmortuary.com for more information.