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Lacrosse world mourns loss of Joseph “Doc” Jurich, 87, pioneer of Abington, Philly lacrosse

Friday, 22nd February 2013

Categories Boy's/Men's, High School  
 

Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 2/22/13
From Staff Report and Phila. Lacrosse Association

The lacrosse world is mourning the loss of Joseph “Doc” Jurich, 87, the first boys’ coach at Abington High, a Hall of Famer and a pioneer in building lacrosse in the Philadelphia region.

Mr. Jurich, of Warminster and formerly of Roslyn, coached numerous high school All-Americans and led the Ghosts to eight league championships from 1963-79. Abington made six state championship game appearances under Doc’s tutelage and enjoyed a cumulative record of 176-62.

"Doc" Jurich

“Doc” Jurich

Mr. Jurich, a 3-time PSLA “Coach of the Year” and a member of the Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter of the US Lacrosse Hall of Fame (Class of 2000), also coached several years at Upper Dublin.

Mr. Jurich also was a decorated World War II Browning Automatic Rifle infantryman, a professional football player, and a teacher. The Doc Jurich Humble Hero Award is given each year to recognize a member of the Bandits club team (Abington) that displays unselfish play while exemplifying the highest moral courage and honorable standards.

“He meant everything to Abington lax,” said Ron Forster, who played at Abington under Jurich from 1973-76 and later helped build Abington youth lacrosse. “He started the program without knowing a thing about the sport in the early ’60′s.

“This was a guy you either loved or hated but was such a presence throughout the school that no matter which, he was always talked about.

“Doc took a wise guy athlete who never saw a lax stick until 9th grade under his wing and turned him into a two-time All-American. I probably wouldn’t have even gone to college but for Doc Jurich and his then-wife Kitty.

“This was a great man who lived a great life and will always be remembered.”

He is the husband of Joanne E. (nee Pannepaker) and the late Kitty. He was predeceased by his 3 sisters.

A viewing will be held 9:00 am, Saturday at Nativity of Our Lord, 605 W. Street Road, Warminster, PA 18974 (near the intersection of Routes 263 & 132), which will be followed by a Memorial Mass at 10:30 am, and a reception at Ann’s Choice, Liberty Commons, 30000 Ann’s Choice Way, Warminster, PA 18974.

Interment is Mon., 11:30 A.M., Washington Crossing National Cem., 830 Highland Rd., Newtown PA 18940. Donations may be made to Ann’s Choice Benevolent Care Fund, 30000 Ann’s Choice Way, Warminster PA 18974.

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READERS COMMENTS (3)

  1. Steve H. says:

    Rest in Peace, Doc! A lot of people can trace their passion for this great game of ours to your willingness to get lacrosse started on “this side of the river” – thanks for everything!

  2. phdlynn says:

    I played defense for Doc in 1963 and 1964, the first two years Abington had a lacrosse team. He had more confidence in me than I had in myself. You will be remembered for along time for your contributions to the game of lacrosse in the Philadelphia area. Lynn Trusal , Abington Class of 64′

  3. Beth Ryan Morris says:

    Thank you Doc for your service to Our Country and Abington Athletics!

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