Joseph J. Welsch
Pennsylvania State Police
Years of Service:
4 years and 8
Cause of Death: Gunshot
Date of Incident:
Joseph J. Welsch was born December 11, 1950, at
He served with the 109th Infantry, ANG, Scranton. He also served on active duty with
Company B, 4th Battalion, 1st BCT Brigade from June 26 to August 27, 1970, and with
Company D, 17th Battalion, 4th CST Brigade from August 28 to October 23, 1970, at Fort
Jackson, South Carolina. Welsch enlisted in the Pennsylvania State Police from Archbald on
January 25, 1973, and was assigned to Troop F, Montoursville. He was 22 years old and
On September 13, 1977, he was detailed to assist Constable Walter Mitchell of Covington,
Tioga County, in serving a surety of the peace and criminal trespass warrant on Mark F.
Geddes, 28, of Covington. The warrant had been issued following an altercation between
Geddes and his father. As Trooper Welsch and Constable Mitchell approached Geddes, he shot
and killed the Trooper. Constable Mitchell suffered a bullet wound of the neck and was
taken to a hospital in Elmira, New York, for treatment. Geddes was apprehended and charged
Trooper Welsch was buried with full military honors at St. Thomas Aquinas Cemetery, Archbald. He was survived by his wife, Mrs. Jean M. Welsch, of Mansfield. She was
presented the State Police Cross on December 13, 1977.
At 26, Trooper Welsch had completed
four years and eight months as a Pennsylvania State Trooper.