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Monday, 30 March 2020 20:45

A Full Service Life

Written by Skye Pournazari, Maryville Forum
Charlie Roush, of Hopkins, MO, stands in his living room. Roush spent 65 years serving his community through auto body repair, but also in numerous other ways. Charlie Roush, of Hopkins, MO, stands in his living room. Roush spent 65 years serving his community through auto body repair, but also in numerous other ways. Skye Pournazari


He continued to coach for many years after they left. Poynter said he still hears from some of those men he coached back then.


“They talk about how they remember all the lessons he taught them,” she said. “It wasn’t just all about baseball.”


Poynter said Roush offered life lessons along with his time. She became a more accurate softball pitcher, thanks to her father’s help. Through his business, Roush also donated to various organizations throughout the community, sponsoring teams and events.


Poynter said he also was incredibly involved in all the school activities in which she and her siblings participated.


“He never missed any of our concerts, ballgames,” she said. “My dad would come to watch us cheer.”


Currently, Roush still participates in Lions Club and is an elder emeritus at the First Christian Church in Hopkins.


Roush is very active in his church, joining just after he and Barbara were married. For years, he was the custodian and later, a youth leader at the church.


“I loved having my dad as my youth group leader,” Poynter said. “My dad was great, he was fun. The other kids loved him. He had these great messages, so I loved it.”


Steven Wainwright, current pastor at the First Christian Church in Hopkins, hasn’t known Roush for a long time, but believes he’s a true leader in the congregation.


“He has just a great love for his church and for his wife Barb,” he said. “He’s a very compassionate and caring person.”


Wainwright recalled when his mother died and Roush called on him not just once, but multiple times offering support.


“Even to this day I can’t really explain how he did it, you could just tell by inflection the care he had and the words he used that he was genuinely there to encourage and to support,” he said. “He’s especially loved in the church.”


Even in disagreement, Wainwright said, Roush has a palatable way to converse about difficult topics.


“We call him one of the patriarchs of the church in a sense that he really stands for the very best of what the church should be and can be,” he said. “He’s done well in his walk with the Lord. I think he’s a person who still seeks to be more and more like Jesus.”


In 2018, Roush was stopped amid work in his shop by a phone call that shuttered his business and changed his life forever.


In early December 2018, Poynter said her dad received a call from Dr. Rony Abou-Jawde’s office at the Mosaic Life Care Cancer Center in Maryville. She explained Dr. A.J. told him to immediately go to the emergency room at St. Luke’s.


“They just had discovered (through a PET scan) that cancer had eaten a lot of his bones away, especially through his neck,” Poynter said.


Multiple myeloma is a cancer of plasma cells in the human body, according to the American Cancer Society. Plasma cells make the antibodies that help the body attack and kill germs. Plasma cells are found mainly in the bone marrow. In general, when plasma cells become cancerous and grow out of control, this is called multiple myeloma.


Poynter said if he had moved in the wrong way, he could have become paralyzed.


After a neck surgery, Roush was moved out of the ICU, and contracted pneumonia three times, but eventually bested it too. He started cancer treatments and was able to go home in a wheelchair.


“Several times they thought not only would he not survive, but never thought he would walk,” she said. “At this point my dad is walking with just a cane. He is a very strong man. He is pretty much who he always was. He’s a little less ebullient, I guess you might say, but not a lot. He’s an amazing guy.”


Roush said he still usually has a side project vehicle he’s working on or thinking about in his free time since closing the shop.


“I’m not working on it very fast,” he said. “When I get back to a little better health I’ll go back out and play with it. I guess the good Lord has something left for me to do. I’m still here and I’m thankful for the good years I’ve had.”


We thank the Maryville Forum for reprint permission. 

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