Christian 10
Official Obituary of

Joseph Jude Dahm

December 1, 1926 ~ June 17, 2023 (age 96) 96 Years Old

Joseph Dahm Obituary

Joseph Jude Dahm, 96, of Fort Wayne, IN, and Naples, FL, passed away peacefully on Saturday, June 17, 2023, at home surrounded by his loving family. He was born on December 1, 1926, to Bert and Catharine (Michel) Dahm. He was the oldest of three boys, the others being Ed Dahm and Mike Dahm. He attended Central Catholic High School and was proud to serve in the United States Navy following High School. He attended one year at Purdue and then transferred to Indiana University, where he became a lifelong Phi Kappa Fraternity member. His studies were cut short when his father suggested he and his brother start a carwash business. In 1948, Joe opened the first automatic carwash in Indiana and one of the first in the Midwest- Mike’s Minit Man Carwash -which grew into the Mike’s Carwash and Crew Carwash businesses the area knows today.  
Known by those close to him for saying, “I’ll pray for you, and you pray for me,” Joe was actively involved in his parish St. Charles Borromeo, Bishop Dwenger High School, Fort Wayne-South Bend Diocese, as well as the broader Fort Wayne Community. He was honored with the Don Wolf Award for service to Big Brothers Big Sisters and has long supported the YMCA Youth Service Bureau. In addition to being an Honorary Fire Chief in 1989, He sat on the Fort Wayne/South Bend Cemetery board. Joe was an active member of the Knights of Columbus, where in 1960, he served as a Grand Knight. He was also a member of Legatus. Joe’s business success led him to be named a Greater Fort Wayne Business Hall-of-fame Laureate in 2001. The carwash industry also recognized Joe’s contribution by naming him president of the International Carwash Association from 1966-67, and he received the Car Wash Hall of Fame Award in 1968  
While Joe was best known for his business acumen, those closest to him know that Faith and family were the driving forces in his life. He led by example and preached the gospel with his life. His commitment to caring for people and cherishing each person’s uniqueness filled his life with joy and purpose. He was affectionately known to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren as “Papa Joe.” His children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren were his greatest joy in life, along with creating opportunities for the family to pray and have fun together. Joe married the love of his life, Dene Dahm (1927-2023), in 1950. Together they had two sons and seven daughters. Surviving are his nine children, Bill (Lisa) Dahm of Indianapolis, IN; Cathy Krouse of Fort Wayne, IN; Mary (Mark) Howlett of Bloomfield Hills, MI; Peggy (Bill) Salin of Indianapolis, IN; Sheila (Jeff) O’Daniel of Fort Wayne, IN, Sarah Kistner of Columbus, OH, Mike (Jenny) Dahm of Cincinnati, OH, Lisa (Marty) White of Fort Wayne, IN, Amy (Steve) Just of Fort Wayne, IN, brother, Mike (DeeDee) Dahm of Fort Wayne, IN and former daughter-in-law Marge Dahm of Fishers, IN; 30 grandchildren and 30 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Dene, brother Ed, and sons-in-law Ed Kistner and Jack Krouse.

Visitation is from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 25, 2023, at Divine Mercy Funeral Home (3500 Lake Avenue, Fort Wayne, IN 46805). The funeral mass and celebration of Joe’s life is 10:30 a.m. on Monday, June 26, 2023, at St. Charles Borromeo Church (4910 Trier Road, Fort Wayne, IN 46815) with calling one hour before the mass. Burial will follow services in Fort Wayne Catholic Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to St. Charles Borromeo Church for masses, Bishop Dwenger High School (1300 E Washington Center Road, Fort Wayne, IN 46825) for tuition assistance, Carmelite Monastery Allendale (59 Allendale, Terre Haute, IN 47802), or YMCA Youth Service Bureau, (3701 S. Calhoun St. Fort Wayne, IN 46807) Arrangements entrusted to Divine Mercy Funeral Home. To sign the online guest book, go to

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June 25, 2023

2:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Divine Mercy Funeral Home
3500 Lake Ave
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46805

June 26, 2023

9:30 AM to 10:30 AM
St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church (Fort Wayne)

Mass of Christian Burial
June 26, 2023

10:30 AM
St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church (Fort Wayne)


Bishop Dwenger High School- Tuition assistance
1300 E. Washington Center Rd., Fort Wayne IN 46825
Tel: 1-260-496-4700
Web: https:\\

Saint Charles Borromeo Catholic School Tuition Assistance
4910 Trier Road, Fort Wayne IN 46815

YMCA Youth Service Bureau
3701 S. Calhoun Street, Fort Wayne IN 46807
Tel: 1-260-449-7511

Carmelite Monastery Allendale
59 Allendale Lane, Terre Haute IN 47802
Tel: 1-812-201-7098


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