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Joseph Michael Whelan

Service Date: September 19, 2020
Visitation Info: Crossroads Church Oakley
Interment Info: Linnemann Funeral Home Crematory
Service Info: Crossroads Church Oakley
Service Info

Joseph Michael Whelan, Joe to everyone, was born on the bright, sunny day of August 17, 2000. He left us suddenly and entirely too soon on September 14, 2020. The world is a better place because Joe Whelan was in it.

Joe loved trivia, all sorts of random facts from any number of almanacs. He loved to rattle off facts about the countries with the largest or smallest populations, the ten largest lakes in the world, and other things that he found incredibly fascinating and the rest of us tolerated. He adored animals, spending three summers working at a horse farm, playing with his beloved dog, Merry, and spending time at the Cincinnati Zoo. Animals loved him, too, proven by giraffes literally following him on a walk when he was on a mission trip in South Africa in 2019. Joe also loved babies, snuggling them and entertaining them at family gatherings. He was an athlete, competing in both cross country and track at Newport Central Catholic High School, where he graduated with high honors in 2019. He was an excellent student, winning the science merit award for his class and was one of a select number of students chosen for the Governor’s Scholar Program in 2018. He had scholarship offers from multiple universities and chose to attend Northern Kentucky University where he majored in neuroscience. Joe was a warrior, feeling a special kinship with St. Michael the Archangel. Trauma in early childhood had him fighting battles no one should ever have to fight but he fought them, one after another, for nearly a decade. He left home twice as a young teen to receive treatment at the best facilities in the country. He was supported by an incredibly dedicated and loving family and a medical team who fought for him and alongside him every step of the way. He had thousands of people around the world praying for him and hearts are broken that he is no longer with us but we know his battle is won, he is free from pain, and he is with Jesus and his beloved Aunt Kathy Beechem. He was welcomed into heaven as he declared, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7. And God responded, “Well done, my good and faithful servant!” Our world is devastated but we know Joe and his family and his treatment team did everything they could in this battle. We are eternally grateful for the support of everyone who loved him and prayed for him. Trauma pain is real. Believe people when they say they are hurting. Get help when you need it. Joe has taught all of us these lessons and we will miss him every day but will continue to fight in his honor. He leaves behind to cherish precious memories his amazing parents, Mike and Christine Whelan, who did everything humanly and spiritually possible for their son to heal. Sisters, Meg and Grace Whelan, grandparents, Michael and Mary Jo Whelan; aunts, Julie (Eric) Crawford, Shauna (Christopher Wanamaker) Whelan, uncle, Kevin (Ann Marie) Whelan; and cousins: Katie, Jack, and Henry Crawford; Dolan, Ainsley, and Quinn Whelan, and Benjamin Wanamaker. We are thankful for our faith in Jesus for knowing we will see Joe again and he will be happy and healthy and free from pain. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to Cincinnati Children’s PO Box 5202 Cincinnati, OH 45201-5202, Northern Kentucky Children’s Advocacy Center (NKCAC) 4890 Houston Rd. Florence, KY 41042, and The Cincinnati Zoo 3400 Vine Street, Cincinnati, OH  45220.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, plans to prosper and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Visitation will take place at Crossroads Oakley Campus, 3500 Madison Road, Cincinnati, OH, 45209, 12:00 – 2:00 pm Saturday, September 19, 2020. Service to follow. Online condolences to:

12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Crossroads Church Oakley

3500 Madison Rd
Cincinnati, OH 45209
2:00 pm

Crossroads Church Oakley

3500 Madison Rd
Cincinnati, OH 45209

Linnemann Funeral Home Crematory

Address: 30 Commonwealth Avenue Erlanger, KY - Kentucky 41018
12:00 am - 12:00 am

Joseph Michael Whelan


From your Champion Family…

Whelan Family – on behalf of your fellow Champion families at Cincinnati Children’s, please accept our sincerest condolences. Joe was a remarkable young man and left an incredible impression on everyone he met. Keeping you all in my prayers. – Chris Holtman

Praying for you

We are deeply saddened to hear about the death of your dear son Joe. We are praying for you all and May God comfort you and hold you in the palm of his hands.

Shakila and Jay Rajaiah.

Deepest Sympathies

Christine, I am truly sad to hear of the passing of your son. As a mom myself, I can only imagine the immense sadness you are experiencing. Please keep all the happy thoughts close to your heart knowing how much he loved you every day. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.
Holly Sheely

Blessings for peace & comfort

Christine and family,
So many times you talked about your wonderful children and what a blessing each one brought to you and Mike. I pray for peace and comfort for all of you at this time. May Joe be embraced by God’s angels as he enters the kingdom of heaven. Loving thoughts with you all.
Karen Thompson

Prayers for comfort

To the Whelan family, we are lifting you up and pray blessings of peace and comfort on you. We love you

Praying for your family

We are so sorry to hear about the loss of your son. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during such a difficult time. ❤️ The Keuper family

Peace be with you

Many prayers for your family during this most difficult time. May you feel God’s peace and healing through all those you love and love you.

Teri Kirchner

I’m so so sorry

Christine and all of the Whalen Family
I was lucky enough to have met Joe and took care of him. Those procedures were highly anxiety provoking but Christine had a plan that worked and I followed that. I knew Joe to be soft spoken but would answer any kind of sage trivia question I could come up with. He was a kind boy and a sweet soul. It’s tragic when a child’s innocence is robbed. It put upon those kids a burden that is difficult to bear. I’m so very sorry that Joe felt his fight had ended. However, I am consoled a bit by knowing his suffering here on earth is over. All my thoughts, prayers for peace and healing vibes sent your way. RIP sweet Joe! ❤️

Peace and Comfort

To Katie and family,

We are so sorry for Joe’s untimely passing. We pray for peace and comfort from our Heavenly Father during this difficult time.

Much love,
Your Northland family

Sincere Condolences

Mike, my sincere condolences on the passing of Joe.
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family
Tony Harding


You all will be in my prayers. Joe will be missed by everyone. He made classes fun and would make everyone laugh. One of the funniest people I’ve ever had the chance to meet. Prayers to all

Our deepest prayers

Mike and Christine,
Please know that myself and my little family will be praying for you guys. Please feel free to reach out to anyone in our family if needed.


Daniel and Melinda Boone and family are so very sorry for your loss. We are thinking of you and praying for you all. May God Bless you.

Sorry for the loss of your son

My heart breaks for you in the loss of your son. Praying for peace for all of you and especially for Joseph, that he is resting in the loving arms of our Lord. Elaine Williams (former volunteer in finance area of Crossroads Oakley)


So very sorry for your loss. Prayers

Sincere Condolences

I am friend of Mike, Joe’s grandfather. Have prayed many hours for him over the years. He was a very special and gifted young man.
Tears flowed when I got this news……

May our Lord just blanket you with his presence at this time.
Jim Tankersley


I ran track and cross country with joe in high school. He was one of my favorite teammates. I cant believe hes gone. There was never a time we were together where there wasn’t a smile on my face. Joe could make me laugh harder than anyone in this world. I miss you Joe.
-Johnny Powers

Praying for Joe and his entire family

I’m so terribly sorry for your loss. I taught Joe music at St. Joe’s and I will always remember him as a super kid and being very talented. He was the cowardly lion in our 6th grade play, The Wizard of Oz, and he did a wonderful job. Joe and his family are in my thoughts and prayers.
Jessica Hetterick

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted

Michael, Christine and family, I trust God’s word when he promises these things over you and your family:
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18
“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,” Isaiah 61:1

We are praying for you and love you.
Your friends,
-Nick & Necie


Whelan family,

You are in our thoughts and prayers. We are so very, very sorry for your loss. God be with all of you!

Lisa, Hannah and Jordan Tucker


We are sorry. We pray blessings of abundant peace over the entire family. We know that the love of many surround you during this time.

Peace and comfort

What a beautiful child of God, blessings for peace and comfort at this time. I know you have such amazing stories of Joe’s earthly journey and how he has impacted so many!

On the death of Joesph Whelan

My thoughts and prayers are with the family on losing s son and brother. May you find peace and understanding.

Ridgetrail Kids forever

The best memories I have of my childhood will forever be playing in the Whelan backyard with all the neighborhood kids. The Whelan kids were always my favorite family to babysit for. Joe was always such a sweet kid. From all us Ridgetrail kids, joe I hope you are playing some great backyard games in heaven. Rest In Peace Warrior,
Ally Buchanan

Prayers for joe and his family.

Had several classes with him when he was just a freshman. Funniest kid in the room and always laughing. God bless
Brennan Hall


Prayers and love to all of you!

Our hearts break for you

Our deepest sympathies and condolences. May you be surrounded by love at this sad time to help ease your pain.
Family Nurturing Center

Sincere Condolences

Words are not easy at a time like this but so important to let the family know there are many feeling Sadness at this time. The pleasure of knowing the Whelan family is ours; the loss of Joe is felt by all who know and love this family. Please accept our condolences at such a difficult time. May the peace in knowing the battle is over bring you strength in the coming days. God’s peace be with all of you.

Dan and Vicki Balton

Gentle Soul

I was Joe’s teacher for several years at St. Joseph School. I will never forget when Joe brought in a chocolate-covered grasshopper and wanted me to “try” it. He handed one to me and took one for himself. We stood in front of the class together chomping away on that little critter. Joe kept his eyes on me to see my expression. I put on a brave face as he giggled to himself at my reaction. This is the Joe I will always remember. He was such a sweet, caring, bright, and curious kid. He will always hold a special place in my heart. Rest in Peace, Joe.

Mrs. Kevill

He was a star…

Joe was our star baseball player in Knothole and played many positions. His favorite position was pitcher where he lead us to many victories. His star is still shining and is as bright as ever in the sky. Our hearts go out to his wonderful family including his NCC family where he was loved dearly.

The Butts Family