Luther Harry Roth, 91, WWII vet, worked at RCA, a calm, gentle, and kind father of four

By on December 20, 2017

Luther Harry Roth, 91, beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend, died Friday, Dec. 8, 2017 at Brethren Village, Lititz.

Luther was the husband of the late Jean Wilson Roth, the love of his life, who he met on a blind date arranged by his brother, Buddy. Luther and Jean were married for 63 years.

A long-time resident of Millersville, Luther was a modest, ethical, and loving person, devoted to his family, church and work.

Luther loved problem-solving and teaching himself new skills, especially hands-on, practical ones that he could put to use for the benefit of his family, friends and church. Being outdoors was a delight for Luther. He liked gardening, traveling and walking too.

Luther was a calm, gentle and kind father, who made it a priority to spend time with his children, teaching them skills and values with great patience. In a family full of conversationalists, Luther often was the attentive listener. But he could be counted on to interject a quick-witted comment.

Luther was born on May 18, 1926 in Wilkes-Barre, the son of the late Frank Herman Roth, Sr. and Caroline D. Schmalzriedt Roth.

He enlisted in the U.S. Navy during World War II, serving for two years, spending time on a cargo ship that went around the world. After being discharged, Luther attended Bloomsburg College on the GI Bill, graduating with a degree in secondary education so he could become a teacher. He and Jean married in 1950.

The young couple lived briefly in York County, where Luther found a job teaching high school math. When Luther got a job at Hamilton Watch in 1951, to work on the development of its self-winding watch and other R&D projects, they moved to an apartment in Lancaster city.

In 1952, the couple bought a house in Millersville, living there for 60 years. They also joined First United Methodist Church in Millersville, when Jean took a job there as church organist. Both served the church in numerous volunteer roles. Luther also was active in Meals on Wheels of Millersville, serving for a time as president of its board. He delivered meals as well for more than 20 years.

Professionally, Luther joined RCA in 1956. As an engineering technician, he worked on picture tubes for cameras that were aboard NASA’s Ranger missions to the moon in the 1960s. Luther worked at RCA for 31 years.

Luther is survived by four children: Barry Roth, husband of Annette Tonell, of Placitas, N.M.; Deb Bierly, wife of Randy Bierly, of Shillington; Alison Mekeel, wife of Tim Mekeel, of Lancaster; and Becky Jones, wife of Cliff Jones, of Joppa, Md.; four grandchildren; a great-granddaughter; and his brother: Carol Roth, of Norway, Maine.

He was predeceased by his sister: Charlotte Patterson; and brothers: Frank “Buddy” Roth and Marvin Roth.

Funeral services were held Dec. 16 at the First Campus of Millersville Community Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Heart Association (; or Philhaven’s Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities (

To send an online condolence, visit Charles. F. Snyder Jr. Funeral Home & Crematory, Lititz, handled the arrangements.

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