Joel William Applebaum

Joel William Applebaum

March 13, 1993 – August 23, 2023

Joel William Applebaum, 30, of Sweet Home passed away August 23, 2023. Joel was born on March 13, 1993 in Santa Rosa, California, to his parents Keith and Julia. At age 8, along with his brother Kyle and sister Laura, the family moved to Roseburg, where Joel attended Melrose Elementary and Jolane Middle School. It was at Jolane that Joel learned to play the trombone and was musician of the year. He then went to Roseburg High School, where he played varsity football, wrestled in the state finals, and was known as a gifted singer. After graduation Joel attended Umpqua Community College before graduating from Oregon State University in 2016. He received his Master’s in Education from Western Oregon University.

While working at a group home for adults with disabilities, Joel met Danielle, the love of his life. Joel and Danielle married and moved to Sweet Home, along with their children: Baylee, Greg, Jordan, Alexandria, Steven, Makenna, and recently adopted son Jacob. In Sweet Home, Joel taught Special Education for 2 years before returning to work in various group homes as a Direct Support Professional and behavior consultant. He had just become licensed as an Oregon Intervention Specialist (OIS) trainer consulting with the state of Oregon and would have traveled statewide.

Joel loved people and had a huge heart that cared deeply for others. He was a dynamo. Joel smiled with abandon, was quick witted and was constantly moving. Joel challenged all who knew him in their thinking, sense of humor, and their patience. As a student, he may have caused a teacher or two to consider early retirement.

While in Sweet Home, Joel and Danielle were busy raising 5 teenagers and frequently opened their home to any child that needed to be loved. Joel was a fierce advocate for those in need and as a result, many considered Joel “dad”. The family loved to camp and a recent trip included 13 teenagers and 3 very tired adults. Trips to the river were an everyday occurrence, Joel loved to fish. Joel and Danielle also coached volleyball for the Boys and Girls Club and had plans to coach again this season.

Joel loved a good adventure. The weekend before his passing he was able to go on an overnight backpacking trip to Twin Lakes in the Umpqua National Forest, one of his favorite spots, with two of his sons and his father. It had been many years since Joel had been there with his dad and he wanted his boys to have their first backpack trip there. They had a wonderful time and Joel was so excited to make new memories with the people he loved.

Joel was a force of nature; tenacious and strong. He was a man who knew God’s heart and was able to share it by his actions that spoke louder than words. He rocked our world.

Joel is survived by his adored wife Danielle and children; Baylee (Paul), Greg, Jordan, Alexandria, Steven, Makenna, Jacob, and granddaughter Mara. His parents Keith and Julia, older brother Kyle, and younger sister Laura. His grandfather Reed, in-laws Scott and Tammee, along with nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, and cousins.

Anyone who knew Joel has a “Joel” story and the family would love to hear them. Please join us in celebrating Joel’s life on Saturday, September 23 at 1pm, Redeemer’s Fellowship in Roseburg. There will also be a Celebration of Life in Sweet Home on October 7th. Additional details will be announced via social media. Sweet Home Funeral Chapel is handling arrangements. sweethomefuneral.com.

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