Joseph "Joe" John Dietrich

March 19, 1928September 15, 2021

DIETRICH, Joseph John, 93, of Centerville, passed away on September 15, 2021. Joe was born in Johnetta, PA, to Joseph and Margaret Dietrich. He was preceded in death by his loving wife, Donna Rae, whom he married in 1953. He is survived by two sons and their wives, Joe and Mary and Ray and Lily; two granddaughters, Karyn Beth and Michelle Camila; and his sister, Delores. He graduated from Stivers High School in 1946 and was recently honored by induction into their Hall of Fame. He also earned degrees from Wittenberg University and Xavier University. Joe served in the US Navy during World War II. He was a former social studies teacher and elementary school principal, as well as a basketball and football coach at Parkman, Kingman, Dixon Israel, Germantown, and Centerville. As the former “Maple Court Maniac” for Gonzaga basketball, athletics were always an important part of his life. He found pleasure in crafting colorful bracelets, gardening, and watching college basketball and football, as well as professional football. He will be greatly missed by many who remained in contact with him throughout his life. He often remarked that he “couldn’t have scripted a better life.”

The family will celebrate his life in a private service. Condolences may be sent to the family at In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to a charity of choice.


  • Memorials to the Carity of the Donor's Choice


  • Private Services For Family


Joseph "Joe" John Dietrich

have a memory or condolence to add?

Nancy White

September 27, 2021

So very sorry to hear of your loss. Mr. Dietrich was my 6th grade history teacher in Germantown. I had kind of a smart mouth in his class sometimes and he had the good grace to just let it go on by.

Jen Cohn

September 26, 2021

As some people journey through life, they leave “footprints” wherever they go. Footprints of kindness and love, courage and compassion, joy and faith. Even when they are gone, we can still look back and clearly see the trail they left behind. A trail bright with hope that invites us to follow.

From the first day I met Joe, he was leaving his trail of footprints and a light so bright it lit up our hearts. Footprints that will forever be in my heart and forever there for everyone who loves him to follow.

I will forever cherish the memories my daughter and I were able to make with him. From cooking dinners, going out to dinner, eating lots of ice cream, building fires, watching movies, singing in the car to celebrating birthdays and all holidays. He helped teach my daughter how to play basketball, make bracelets and drive a car (just to hit the very tip of a big iceberg of things).

He was there for countless hours to listen to us and help guide us in life. His love was altruistic, pure and unconditional. Joe, I love you! You will always be a huge part of who I am and I can’t thank you enough for your love!

I wear my “I love Joe” pin you gave me with such honor ♥️

The picture below is of the eclipse he so badly wanted to see. A day I will cherish spending with him.

Lexi Cohn

September 26, 2021

To me, Joe was the love that never wavered. In his memory, I have vowed to unconditionally love just as he would. My life has forever been changed for the better by Joseph John Jerome Dietrich :) Although he was not blood, he was more my family than anyone. I will never let go of all of the holidays I had the pleasure of celebrating with him. Not only did he give me years of love and acceptance, but he has slowly helped lead me to faith. I will try with all of my power to let his teachings live on with me throughout life. I will live to carry out the light he spread everywhere he went.

I will forever hold your memory as sacred. I love you so much Joe. I will see you again in the next life.

Laurie Klopfer

September 21, 2021

Joe and Donna (RIP) are imbedded in decades and generations of memories for the Klopfer family. Since their friendship began in Germantown in the 1950s, through educational accomplishments, basketball enthusiasm, and changes of address, Joe and Donna kept in touch throughout their lives and were of great support to our entire family.

A donation to Hospice of Dayton has been made in Joe's memory.
Virlen & Nancy Klopfer (RIP)
Bob & Janie Klopfer
Bill & Patty Klopfer (RIP)
Mike & Laurie Klopfer

Troy Hayward

September 21, 2021

Joe has been my neighbor and friend for over 50 years, I could not have asked for a better neighbor or friend. After all these years my kids still call him Mr. Dietrich , long after they had him as their principal at Ida Weller, Joe was the ultimate groundskeeper and I could never get my grass to look as nice as his. He was a very special person in my life and I couldn’t let this moment pass without sharing. He will be missed.

Adele Miesmer

September 19, 2021

Joe lived across the street from my mom and dad. Dad and Joe both attended Stiver's High School graduating the same year. They quickly became close friends in their later years. As they both became more homebound I had the honor of bringing Joe and my parents holy communion on Sundays. I enjoyed the conversations we had - talking about school sports, his history, his life with his beloved wife, and just the world in general.
Joe was a good man and I have no doubt he is in the arms of the Lord and his sweet "Donnie." My sincere condolences go out to Joe's family and friends.

Freda Chambliss

September 19, 2021

Although not by blood Joe was family to me. He inspired me to be more. He said he always felt a special calling for me.
He made beautiful bracelets and gave them to many people. I wonder how many people have one and know how much love he put in them.
He loved the Lord and our loss is heavens gain.
He was a very accomplished man who lived an amazing life.
He was salt of the earth. I will miss him dearly. I will always cherish the memories I have in my heart.

Bill & Pat Roberts

September 19, 2021

Joe was our Principal, Coach and Teacher at Dixon-Israel from 1955-1958. He was a great coach and teacher. Above all, he was a great person and was respected by everyone. It was an honor to be his students. Rest in Our Savior's Arms, Coach.

Jim Peth

September 19, 2021

Our sweatshirts say it all - What we believe changes the world. I’ve received hundreds of emails and facebook comments from Joe’s friends, praying for his family.

Robert Hartshorn

September 19, 2021

Coach Dietrich was my football coach at Centerville HS. What a great guy! He than was the principle for my son and daughter at Ida A Weller . Joe always stopped to say hi and demonstrated his love for the Lord and his fellow man. I have nothing but pleasant memories of Joe.