FISHERS, Ind. —
Wilbur R. “Tree” Trosch of Fishers passed away Monday, May 5, 2014. He was 75.
Mr. Trosch was born Aug. 2, 1938, in Martins Ferry, Ohio, to Wilbur and Jennie Kartanawicz Trosch.
Wilbur moved with his family to Pittsburgh as a child, where his father worked in steel mills.
“Tree,” as he was affectionately called by friends and family, excelled in both studies and sports while attending Clairton High School in Pittsburgh. Standing at 6 foot 8 inches and weighing 240 pounds, Tree was truly “larger than life.”
His hard work in the classroom and on the basketball court earned him an athletic scholarship to St. Francis University in Loretto, Pa. Wilbur led his team to a 54-19 record during his three years of collegiate eligibility and was voted team captain his senior year by his teammates. He earned a berth in the renowned East-West All-Star game after a highlight senior season where he averaged 22 ppg and 11 rpg. Wilbur remains the 10th all-time leading scorer, and fifth all-time leading rebounder at St. Francis.
1960 was a very good year as Wilbur was selected in the NBA draft in April as the 13th overall pick by the Syracuse Nationals, predecessor to the Philadelphia 76ers. Wilbur was a member of Delta Fraternity and was inducted into both the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame and St. Francis University Athletic Hall of Fame.
On Nov. 25, 1960, Wilbur married the love of his life, Carmella Sporio Trosch.
At that time, he began giving back, as both an influential and recognized high school teacher and a highly successful basketball head coach at West Mifflin High School. Both careers were rewarding and long, stretching to more than 30 years.
Wilbur enjoyed golf and gardening. He took extreme pride in any task he undertook and his lawn and garden were the envy of every neighbor.
He was a valued friend and role model to anyone he met. He loved his family and was a friend to so many.
He donated time to helping the Indianapolis Salvation Army. His words and actions have made a difference in many, many lives, include his favorite motto “Attitude is Everything.”
Wilbur is survived by: his loving wife of 53 years, Carmella; a brother, Thomas; a son, Daniel Trosch; a daughter, Sandy and her husband Dan Walsh; and another son, Eric Trosch and his wife Misty; and his loving grandchildren, Columbo, Eric, Kelsey, Garret, Katie and Jacob.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Wilbur R. Trosch – West Mifflin Boys Basketball Scholarship Fund in care of Trosch and Co., Building 9, 750 Foster Plaza, Suite 105, Pittsburgh, PA 15220.
Wilbur R. “Tree,” 75, Fishers, Ind.
Calling hours and service: 10 a.m. to time of service at 11:30 a.m. Friday (5-9-14) in SHIRLEY BROTHERS FISHERS-CASTLETON CHAPEL, Fishers. A memorial service will be held later this summer season in West Mifflin (Pa.). www.shirleybrothers.com
Burial: To follow at Oaklawn Memorial Gardens, Fishers.