In 1927, Joe joined the Canton Police Department. While on the police force, he served as a patrolman on motorcycle duty. He left the force in 1931. In 1929 Joe married Gertrude Hale. Jim Thorpe attended the ceremony and acted as best man. In 1935 Joe divorced his first wife and married a Mrs. Winifred (Winnie) Wood. With this wife Joe had two daughters Norma Jean and JoAnn. He died on March 6, 1939 when his automobile struck a tree at the bottom of a hill in Canton, Ohio.