Joseph “Joey” J. Saba • October 14, 2022

Joseph James Saba passed away on October 14, 2022, surrounded by his loving family.
He was born on September 12, 1947, in New Bedford, Massachusetts, to Michael Joseph and Mary Cornelia Saba. He was the second born of four children. Joe was fortunate to travel the world at an early age due to his father’s deployments overseas in the U.S. Navy. He most loved his time spent in Naples, Italy when he was eleven through fourteen years old. His family’s travels eventually brought them to Milton, Florida in 1961. It was at Milton High School in October 1963 where he met the love of his life, Suzie Saba. Joe and Suzie married on February 22, 1969. Joe attended the University of West Florida, where he studied accounting, and was a proud member of the inaugural 1969 graduating class.
After graduation, Joe started his 34-year career as a civil servant for the Department of Defense at NAS Pensacola. He began in 1969 as an Accountant for the Naval Audit Service. In 1977, he became a Budget Analyst for Naval Training Command, CNET. Beginning 1981, until his retirement in 2003, he was the Deputy Inspector General, CNET. As the Deputy Inspector General for over 22 years, he positively impacted Sailors, Marines, and their families through his efforts to uphold the highest levels of readiness, discipline, integrity, and public confidence. Throughout his career he received numerous “Outstanding Service” awards from his various commanding officers and US Navy Vice Admirals. His service culminated in a “Superior Civilian Service Award”, the highest award the Chief of Naval Operations may bestow on a civilian employee in the Department of the Navy.
The greatest joy in his life was raising his family alongside his wife, Suzie. He loved traveling with and to see his children and grandchildren, and especially late nights sharing stories and playing games with his family. Throughout his life he was a dedicated member of local community service organizations, including the Knights of Columbus, N.E. Optimist Club, coaching generations of baseball players with Bill Bond and Northeast Pensacola Optimist, and membership on multiple local school advisory councils. He also remained a dedicated and active member of Nativity Catholic Church, serving as a lector, educator, Eucharistic Minister, and coach.
He is survived by his beautiful wife of 53 years, Suzie (neé Werner) Saba; children Kevin (Janice) Saba, Kurt (Wendi) Saba, Carrie (Dennis) White, and Christopher (Amy) Saba; his “Great Eight” grandchildren, Benjamin, Kaden, Tanner, Emma, Connor, Lexie, Parker, and James; siblings Cynthia (Vic, d.) Rhodes, Sandra (Ronnie) Jernigan, and Paul (Stella) Saba; siblings-in-law Barry (Hilda, d.) Werner, Betsey (Ken) Dodson, Wanda (Ronnie, d.) Werner, and Jayne Saba; and multiple cousins, nephews and nieces whom he loved.
Visitation will be held from 9:30 to 10:15 a.m. on Monday, October 24, 2022, at Nativity of Our Lord Catholic Church, with a funeral Mass immediately following at 10:30.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Ronald McDonald House Charities Northwest Florida, Covenant Care Hospice, or the charity of your choice.

  1. Flo Holloway says:

    Our love goes out to all of you. We’ll always remember Joey smiling and happy at the Gator Games in Gainesville. He was beloved so much by his Aunt Carolyn, Tim and our entire Holloway Family. May the Lord be with you in the coming days as you seek comfort in one another and many, many happy memories.
    With love and prayers,
    Flo and Family

  2. Sidney and Darlene Holloway says:

    Our deepest condolences go out to Suzie and all of the Saba family. Joey was such a wonderful person who made everyone he came in contact with feel better. He will be held in loving memory by so many forever.

  3. James and Helen Adams says:

    So very sorry for your loss. He was a wonderful man, super father and husband. He was also a great coach of young guys.
    May his memory be eternal.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with the family.
    With all our love,
    James and Helen Adams

  4. Nicole Scarpaci says:

    I am so deeply sorry to learn of Mr. Saba’s passing. My deepest condolences and sympathy goes out to all of his family. Sending many prayers and love to you all.

  5. mike and wanda horgan says:

    So very sad to hear this news. Our hearts go out to all the family and to Suzie especially. What a great guy Joe was. Always upbeat, great sense of humor. Fond memories of our time spent around the diamond and the pitch.

  6. Nancy and Bill Mcwhirter says:

    Joe, you were our friend and pew friend in Church. You sat next to Bill every Sunday. Suzie said it was O.K. Since Bill had all his shots. Joe please save us a place in Heavens pew. Our prayers and thoughts are with you, Suzie, and your family.
    Nancy and Bill

  7. Danielle & Kenny Tanner says:

    I will miss seeing Mr. Joe at the ball field where he enjoyed watching his grandkids play baseball and softball. Emma and Parker had a great cheerleader in the stands! I’m so happy they will have the memories of having their grand father come to support them! He always had a smile on his face and was so pleasant to speak with. I know he will still be watching them play ball from Heaven. Prayers for Mrs. Suzie, Carrie and family.

  8. David Mawhinney says:

    Suzie, My heart goes out to you with Joe’s passing. He was the best of the best! I served with him for my last year in the Navy at CNET and he constantly kept me out of trouble. Always the consummate professional he was not above bantering with me about my Seminoles and his Gators! I had every intention of keeping in touch when I retired but time gets away from us and that I regret. Just know he was never far from my thoughts and I count myself blessed
    for having known him. RIP my friend. Looking forward to seeing you on the other side!

  9. John and Isabel Fitzgerald says:

    Suzie, We were so very sorry to read of Joe’s passing. Please know you and your family are in our prayers. John and Isabel

  10. Ava Rich says:

    Suzie, Kevin, Kurt, Carrie and Christopher. We all loved Joey. Always laughing, smiling and had a way of reaching out to the kids. He was a wonderful coach and a special friend. My heart goes out to all of you.

  11. Gene Nara says:

    Dear Mrs. Saba: I was very sorry to hear about your loss
    of Mr. Saba. Your son, Kevin and his family are close friends
    of mine and my family. We all mourn with you and your family over your loss. May our Lord, bless you and all you
    love during this very sad time.

    Gene Nara. and family.

  12. Zach Cook says:

    Mr. Saba was one of the most significant men in my childhood. I probably spent as many nights at the Saba’s house as I did my own growing up. …I can see and hear him remind me to use my left foot on the soccer field! Stubborn me, he reminded me, and was right, often!!!

    Mr. Saba was the foundation to an amazing and beautiful family who I love and respect very much.

  13. Marnee Finch says:

    Suzie, the years I spent working with Joe were a highlight of my career. He not only taught me to be an IG, but he was a best friend and confidant when I needed one. I loved haunting the ball fields, watching him coach his kids, wearing those red cleats. It is an honor to have called him my friend. My love to you and the family as you move through this tough time.

  14. Clayton Stewart says:

    Suzie, Marilyn and I are so sorry to hear of your loss. We are so out of touch these days and feel awful that we did not find out sooner. We are both heartbroken. Please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Clayton and Marilyn

  15. Ken & Betsy Dodson says:

    Our dear Brother in law. We love him so much. It was always fun to see the Christmas decorations he spent hours putting in batteries in. We’ve had many great time since we moved back home. Miss you Joey, but we’ll see you again one day. We’ll all look after Suzie for you. Love you all.
    Ken and Betsy.

  16. Patty Taylor says:

    In looking for your birthday I discovered that Joey has died. I am so sorry for your loss as I know you all were a tight family sharing lots of love with many people. My love and prayers go to you and your children and grandchildren. May you know the peace of Jesus in your hearts and lives.

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