Cover photo for Joseph L. Rockey's Obituary
Joseph L. Rockey Profile Photo
1933 Joseph 2024

Joseph L. Rockey

March 9, 1933 — June 24, 2024

Joseph “Joe” L Rockey, 91, of Bismarck, passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family on June 24, 2024.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:00 AM, Friday, June 28, at Corpus Christi Church, 1919 N 2nd St, Bismarck. To view the service livestream, please click this link Corpus Christi – YouTube.

Visitation will be held from 5:00-7:00 PM, Thursday, June 27, at Parkway Funeral Service, 2330 Tyler Pkwy, Bismarck. A rosary/vigil will begin at 7:00 PM. 

Burial will be held at St. Mary's Cemetery, Bismarck.

He was born March 9th, 1933, at St. Alexius Hospital in Bismarck, to J.W. Rockey and Pauline (Braun) Swanson. He graduated from Bismarck High School in 1951. Joe met the love of his life in 1949 at a high school basketball game. The two got married on June 11th, 1953, at Pro-cathedral of St. Mary’s Church.

He worked at Universal Motors in Bismarck as a Parts Manager and at MacCarney Ford as a Car Salesman in Bismarck. Joseph and his family picked up and moved in 1966 to Billings, MT, where he started working at Clark Lincoln Mercury as a Car Salesman until 1971. In January of 1971, his family picked up again and moved back to Bismarck, ND. He started at Pitney Bowes as a Salesman until 1995, when he retired after 25 years there. Joe was a very successful salesman, and he won many awards over the years. His biggest accomplishment was being awarded the Million-dollar club. 

Joe was a longtime parish member of Corpus Christi Church.He was also a member of the Bismarck Eagles Club, Bismarck Moose Lodge, Bismarck Elks Lodge for over 53 years and a Knights of Columbus member. 

Joe enjoyed boating, camping and rodeos in the summertime. He loved music, collecting records and playing the accordion. Joe loved to boogie on the dance floor with his wife Margaret to a variety of polkas and waltzes. Joe’s favorite hobby of all time though was cars, whether it was rebuilding motors, restoring them, or selling them. In addition, he loved to travel and almost visited every US state. Joe’s favorite trip though was to San Juan, Puerto Rico. Most important to Joe though was spending time with his family. 

Joseph is survived by his wife Margaret; his is three children: Cheryl Jose, Pewaukee, WI; Charlyne Kemmesat, Bismarck; and Robert (Rhonda) Rockey, Bismarck; grandchildren: Breanna Jose, Milwaukee, WI; Kalee (Jonathan) Werner, Pierre, SD; Ciarra (Chad) Cason, Pewaukee, WI; Collin (Danielle) Kemmesat, Bismarck; Colton Jose, Sussex, WI; Alexis Rockey, Bismarck; Levi (Alie) Rockey, Bismarck; Dalton Kemmesat, Bismarck; great-grandchildren: Logan Cason, Brinley Cason, Avlyn Werner, Avra Werner, Halston Kemmesat, Adalyn Cason; siblings: Fred Swanson (Christine) Bismarck; Edward Swanson, AZ; Mary Swanson (Donald) Bismarck; Sharon Ellsworth (Terry), Mandan; Karen Nagel, Bismarck; Laurie Holt, WI; as well asmany lifelong friends. 

He was preceded in death by his father, J.W. Rockey; his mother, Pauline (Braun) and stepfather, Marvin Swanson; infant brother, Donald Rockey; sister, Joanna; sister-in-law, Amanda Swanson and son-in-law, Donald Jose; along with many aunts and uncles. 

According to Joseph’s wishes, his body was cremated, and his ashes buried at the St. Mary’s Cemetery in Bismarck, ND. 

In the lieu of flowers, the family appreciates donations to Corpus Christi in Joseph Rockey’s name: 

1919 North Second Street, Bismarck, ND 58501. 

Contact: 701-255-4600,




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Joseph Rockey Bulletin.pdf

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, June 27, 2024

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Parkway Funeral and Cremation Service

2330 Tyler Parkway, Bismarck, ND 58503

A rosary/vigil service will begin at 7:00 PM.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Friday, June 28, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

Church of Corpus Christi

1919 N 2nd St, Bismarck, ND 58501

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Friday, June 28, 2024

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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