Death came like a thief in the night, stealing a son, brother, husband, dad, and grandpa away from us on July 4, 2020. This year’s Independence Day was one for Sterling as well: freeing his tormented body from the monster within named Huntington’s Chorea. Sterling Glen Roche was born in Brigham, UT on October 28, 1971, the son of Lorin Francis and Mary Ann Bruderer Roche. He graduated from Box Elder High in 1990 and served a mission in Cleveland, OH, for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. After his mission, he attended Universal Technology School in Phoenix, AZ, where he studied Automotive/Diesel Repair, graduating with honors in 1994. This was no surprise, since he was always taking things apart to figure out how they worked when he was younger. We used to joke that we couldn’t leave him alone downstairs or he might take apart the washer!
Sterling started his dream job shortly after as a Forklift Technician at Arnold Machinery. Arnold Machinery was an amazing employer for the more than 25 years that Sterling was with them. Even after his diagnosis and with the subsequently-progressive symptoms of the disease, Sterling’s team treated him with great respect and helped him remain working as long as possible. We are indebted to his coworkers who helped him during his last years, especially, to retain meaning and purpose.
Sterling married his friend, Shelly Blanchard, on March 13, 1999, and became a loving dad to three beautiful children in the process: Tori, Tristan, and Aubree. In 2003, they gained another daughter, Melissa, and in 2005, he rounded out his motley crew with the arrival of his youngest son, Samuel.
Sterling lived in North Ogden. He enjoyed mechanics, hunting, fishing, riding 4-wheelers, camping, and the outdoors in general. Not to be rivaled by his love of NASCAR as he was as HUGE Dale Earnhardt, Sr. fan. And we can’t leave out his devotion to the Rams NFL football team. Go Rams! Attending his son, Samuel’s, football games and playing with his grandbabies were the highlights of his life.
Always a ‘Rhinestone Cowboy’ at heart, as a little guy of 4 or 5, he played Glen Campbell’s 1975 single so many times, we were surprised he didn’t wear out the vinyl! Sterling lived the cowboy motto of being a hard worker, constantly looking for someone he could serve, and always with a huge smile on his face.
Being our leftie, he was always in his ‘right’ mind but always at the far-left corner of the table. As a practical joker, he kept us on our toes — we never could tell where our plates would end up, so avoiding his corner was sometimes a thing! His amazingly tight hugs and sense of humor would brighten anyone’s day, and his gift of patience was a blessing to us all.
He is survived in death by his parents, Lorin Francis and Mary Ann Bruderer Roche of Brigham, UT; his spouse, Shelly Blanchard; and his children who were the joys of his life: Tori Montag, Tristan Blanchard, Aubree Roche, Melissa (Colton) Doxey of ND, and Samuel Roche. He is also survived by his nine adored grandchildren, his siblings: Sienna Elise Jade, Kayelynn Roche of NE, Ann (Travis) Noyes, and many loving aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews.
Sterling is preceded in death by both sets of grandparents: Glen and Lucille Roche and Alma and Jean Bruderer, and his brother Jeffery Roche.
A small outdoor wake will be held this Saturday, July 11th, 2020 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Memorial Lakeview Mortuary and Cemetery located at 1640 Lakeview Dr., Bountiful, UT.
Graveside services will be held Thursday, July 16th, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. at the Brigham City Cemetery located at 300 East 300 South, Brigham, UT.
The family asks that attendees at either gathering please come dressed in fun, colorful attire suitable for celebrating Sterling’s life. They especially encourage cowboy, NFL, or NASCAR clothing.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in the name of Sterling Roche to The Huntington’s Disease Foundation at https://hdsa.org/hd-research/research-we-fund/ or to The Quinn Project at http://www.thequinnproject.org/. Condolences may be sent to the family at SRocheCondolences@hotmail.com
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