Joseph D. Ritzman, age 80, died on April 21, 2023, at his home in McAlisterville, Pa.
He was born at home in Oakland Mills, the fifth son and sixth child of D. Carl and Marion Adams Ritzman.
He graduated from Millersville and Shippensburg Universities with degrees in teaching and history. Following his graduation, he worked as a teacher and moved into banking, eventually retiring after being the manager at the Juniata Valley Bank in McAlisterville for 30 years.
However, his dream was farming. Shortly after marrying his wife Mary nee Bucher, in 1970, they purchased and operated part of a small fruit farm. The operation of that farm expanded throughout his life, and he continued working the land into his “retirement.” He was diagnosed with colorectal cancer in 2017 and did not stop farming until the cancer prevented him, but Joe continued doing as much as possible with the land until very near the end of his life.
Faith defined Joe’s life. His personal attitude was one of prayer and study, and he was deeply religious. Joe was a guest speaker at various local churches, and was happy to share his faith.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by his son, Seth, daughter-in-law, Lisa, and two grandsons, Jack and Ian. He is also survived by six siblings, David (Cornelia, dec.), Denton (Shirley, dec.), Earl (Cindy), Jane Cook, Samuel (Sharon), and Susan Mitchell. He was predeceased by a beloved granddaughter, Abigail Michelle, and oldest brother, Harry (Donna).
The services will be on May 13, 2023 beginning with a graveside committal at 10:00 a.m. at Old Church Hill Cemetery, Port Royal, PA, followed by a Celebration of Life at Faith Bible Church, Port Royal at 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Abigail Ritzman Fountain, Mon General Hospital, 1200 J. D. Anderson Drive, Morgantown, W.V., 26505 or to Faith Bible Church 317 East Fourth Street, Port Royal 17082.
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