Joshua Rothgaber, 26, of Mount Joy, died unexpectedly due to a motor vehicle accident on Friday, October 22, 2010 in Hershey. Born June 22, 1984, he was the son of C Douglas and Nada (Burd) Rothgaber. He will be lovingly missed by his wife, Victoria (Grisham) Rothgaber. Josh grew up in Grantville, Pennsylvania, where he graduated from homeschool high school in 2002. Josh accepted Jesus as his Saviour at a young age and was baptized at age 17. He loved life and was always willing to help anyone in need whether it be a friend or a stranger needing assistance, a job that needed done, someone broken down, or someone stuck in the mud or in a snow drift. From a young age, he was always working on vehicles. He bought his first truck at age 15 and rebuilt it before he could even drive. His zest for life and his servant spirit allowed him to be involved in and touch many lives as he pursued apprenticeships and jobs in multiple vocations during his high school years and post-graduate years. While growing up, Joshua volunteered many hours in service work as his family served on the board of CHAP, the Christian Homeschool Association of Pennsylvania. He traveled with his family as part of his education and was able to count hiking in the Grand Canyon and climbing Devils Tower in Wyoming as two of his accomplishments. During his post school years, he pursued many vocations from plumbing in New Mexico to steel fabrication and finally property management in central Pennsylvania. His outdoor interests included every form of hunting, both archery and rifle, and rock crawling with his Jeep. From the time he met his lovely wife, Victoria, they were inseparable. They were married in a western-style wedding in Maryland in May of 2007. Victoria shares many of the same interests as Josh, and the two of them were working on remodeling their home in Mount Joy. On the morning of Josh's death, Victoria's doctor confirmed they would be having their first child in June. In addition to his wife, Joshua is survived by his unborn child; his father- and mother-in-law, Roger and Elizabeth Grisham; his brother-in-law, Airman 1st Class James Grisham; his grandmother, Aurie Rothgaber; and grandfather-in-law, John Mundorff.
The accident happened at Route 39 and Canal Road in Hershey. A car turned left in front of Josh on his motorcycle and he had no time to react. He died instantly. No one was speeding, no one was under the influence.... God just blinded that man so he did not see Josh.
After the funeral we spent November in Pennsylvania . Then when we saw we could not do anything more for Vicky, we headed south right after Thanksgiving. We stopped overnight in Jackson, MS and spent a sleepless night as there were tornado warnings. We were ready to move at a moments notice as we watched the weather maps live on the local TV stations. A tornado touchdown 8 miles north of us and destroyed homes and structures. Little did we know that was the start of a record year of tornadoes. We pulled in to a campground in New Braunfels, TX, just north of San Antonio where we had had a reservation for November and December. We met a lovely couple who we hit it off with that first night when we went to dinner. For 16 days we had lots of fun together with Jim and Denise. They laughed and cried with us when we talked about Josh. Jim had retired even earlier than Doug.... 54 to Doug's 58. He was a state policeman in Ohio. we had so many things in common down to the same model of motorhome - theirs was one year newer than ours. Just 16 days later, Jim abruptly died in his sleep. We cried with and tried to support Denise until her family flew in from around the country. We continued to be friends through the winter. Denise flew home to Ohio for Jim's funeral and to take care of details but then she came back to New Braunfels and the motorhome where she spent the winter. Meanwhile, we went down to the Rio Grande Valley to Mission, TX for January and February. Denise drove down in her car and spent several days with us. On our way north we stopped in New Braunfels and spent two weeks with her. Then we said our good byes as we headed to Red Bay, AL to have some motorhome work done.
I'll post some photos from the winter in my next post.