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Joseph Lebherz

1953 - 2019
Joseph Lebherz Obituary
Mr. Joseph Edward "Joe" Lebherz, 66, of Frederick, passed away on Thursday, May 23, 2019. He was married for 36 years to Eileen Rafferty, who predeceased him in May, 2015. Together, they bore and raised three children, who survive them both.

Joe was driven in life by new ideas and problem solving. Even though he spent the majority of his working life in an office setting, he loved hard work and physical labor. He had a passion for poetry, especially that by Robert Frost, for art and architecture, for music of all kinds - he was an accomplished solo instrumental guitarist, and for sports, and was a fairly good athlete in his day. His life was also a lifelong quest to rediscover soul, a concept often lost or overlooked by psychology and religion, subjects in which he was well read.

His early work life was varied - clerk at an inner-city grocery store in Cleveland, Ohio, soils lab technician, carpenter / painter / handyman, chimney sweep. Those years, he often said, laid the foundation for both work and life. When asked, he always said that the three greatest teachers in his life were frustration, disappointment, and the inevitable necessary mistakes we all must make.

As he settled into his work, he had the great privilege to work for US Representative Beverly Byron, a person who was a constant source of inspiration, strength and common sense, and someone he held in the highest regard. In 1993, Joe was hired to work for and lead the Frederick County Chamber of Commerce, whose members, he never forgot to recognize, made him smart, or at least made him look smart. He completed his working life at Mount St. Mary's University, and especially cherished his time and tenure directing the Mount's Frederick campus for seven years, working as a team with the exceptional and professional staff in Frederick, with whom he was honored to be associated.

Joe was born on April 22, 1953, in Frederick, to Bill and Sis (Staley) Lebherz, their fifth child and fourth son, to be followed by two more sisters. He never forgot how fortunate his life became to be born into a family and environment filled with laughter, deep and unconditional love, stories of youthful mischief, and family traditions. His circle of life and love extended to a large and extended family.

In 1979, Joe married the love of his life, Eileen, and together they savored the experience of love and its fulfillment. Their three children - Luke (fiance Carly), Emma (Mario), and Jane - were a constant source of surprise, laughter, pride and inspiration. When friends and family would remark, as they often did, about their poise, intelligence and good looks, he always said that those qualities came directly from their mother. To his quiet dismay, but also his satisfaction, no one ever disputed him.

The family wishes to acknowledge and express its appreciation for the tremendous love and encouragement shown over the past year to our father, brother and uncle. The family is especially grateful for the support shown by the Patty Pollatos Fund, Dr. Ross Donehower and his team at the Skip Viragh Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, and to Hospice of Frederick County. Donations are encouraged to all three organizations for the fine and critical missions they each pursue.

The family will hold a reception and viewing the at Keeney Basford Funeral Home, 106 East Church Street in downtown Frederick, on Friday, May 31 from 4:00 - 8:00 p.m. A funeral Mass and celebration will be held at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, 118 E. Second Street in downtown Frederick, on Saturday, June 1, 2019, beginning at 10am. Burial of the bodily remains will occur at St. John's Cemetery, accessible from East Third or East Fourth streets in downtown Frederick, immediately following the funeral.

Joe loved flowers, and he would enjoy knowing that the ceremonies might be perfumed with the sweet smells of spring.
Published Online in The Frederick News-Post from May 25 to May 26, 2019
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