Joseph Arthur Kroetsch, 74, of Grayson went to be with his Lord on Thursday March 31, 2022,
at King’s Daughters Medical Center in Ashland, Kentucky.
Joe was born January 15, 1948, in Langdon, North Dakota, first-born son of the late Arthur Joseph Kroetsch and Dolores Ann Bimler Kroetsch. In addition to his parents, Joe was preceded in death by a sister, Rose Hale; a brother, James Kroetsch; and two brothers-in-law, David Bubke and Ernie Hale.
Joe was a graduate of St. John's University at Collegeville, Minnesota with a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry. He worked with Ashland Oil Company over 25 years, often serving interim positions in refineries across the U.S.A. Joe developed a color testing scale to determine sulphur content in petroleum products—which is still used today. He spent time in Nigeria setting up the first petroleum plant. During his free time, these business travels gave him opportunities to support missionaries, disciple people in the Christian faith, and create lifelong friends.
Joe was active with Christian ministries for various churches. He served as an elder, care pastor, and participated in outreach ministry, directing missions and drama departments. Joe’s passion for sharing the message of Jesus’ love was deeply rooted in the fabric of his life. Joe was a mentor to many. He was known and loved for his encouragement, vision, and general optimism.
Joe was a loving family man who always enjoyed having his family around. He enjoyed playing the harmonica and accordion with the family band. He had many interests including flying, the history of iron furnaces, biblical giants, trains and more. He was an inventor, a tinkerer, a photographer, an artist, a carpenter and was constantly cracking jokes many of them being "dad type" jokes. He was a storyteller, and a historian, an author, coffee connoisseur, and a poet.
Joe launched and managed a specialty niche faux painting and photography business with his wife, Ladonna. They helped with restoration projects on several historical buildings in Kentucky such as the Governor’s mansion. Joe enjoyed capturing memories for families, groups, fundraisers, and a leading nursery trade show and publication.
Joe is survived by his loving wife of more than 50 years, Ladonna Faye Schoch Kroetsch; two daughters, Beth Dreves (Dave) of Shelbyville, KY and Kathy Jo Gernhardt (Roy) of Hanson, MA; a son, Joshua Kroetsch (Sara) of Williamsburg, KY; six grandchildren, Isaiah Gernhardt, Spencer Childers, Hannah Gernhardt, Blaise Dreves, Evelyn Kroetsch and Elijah Kroetsch; three sisters, Mary Ann Zabinski, Margaret Bubke and Elizabeth Peters and their families; a brother, Thomas Kroetsch and family, and a host of friends and extended family who mourn his passing.
A private celebration of life service was held with the family. Arrangements are entrusted to the Malone Funeral Home in Grayson.
In lieu of flowers, to pay tribute to Joe, the family humbly requests donations to help cover funeral, medical expenses, and ongoing support to his wife Ladonna. Contributions may be sent using this GoFundMe https://gofund.me/219d4ea4.