Otterbein Says Farewell to a Good Friend
Edwin L. "Dubbs" Roush ’47 died in the afternoon on Wednesday, June 8, 2011. Dubbs was a
beloved friend of Otterbein and touched many of its alumni.
Dubbs' senior photo.
A native of central Ohio, Dubbs grew up on a farm near Gahanna, Ohio.
Following graduation from Gahanna Lincoln High School, Dubbs entered
Otterbein University as a freshman in the fall of 1940 to play football
under Coach Sam Selby. Dubbs and teammate Francis “Red” Bailey ’43
co-captained the 1942 football team before leaving to join the U.S. Navy
Dubbs served for three years, three months, and three days. After his
honorable discharge, Dubbs married his college sweetheart, Marilou
Harold ’45, and re-enrolled in Otterbein. In the fall of 1946 he was the
co-captain and quarterback of the football team, leading his teammates
to an undefeated conference season and the conference championship, the
first in Otterbein’s history. Dubbs graduated from Otterbein in its
Centennial Year and would spend the rest of his life promoting and
serving his alma mater and Otterbein athletics.
Dubbs as a coach.
one year as a professional football player in Detroit, he accepted a
position at Columbus North High School to teach and coach, then returned
to Gahanna to teach and coach the 1950 Franklin County championship
Dubbs left his career in education in 1951 to become a successful
businessman, starting with his first small store, Roush Hardware. He
later added Roush Sporting Goods and Roush Honda to the Roush family of
In 1955, when former teammate Robert “Moe” Agler was named head
football coach at Otterbein, Dubbs joined former co-captain Red Bailey
to establish the “O” Club, an athletic boosters club, and served as its
first president. He was also instrumental in the establishment of the
“O” Club Foundation.
A loyal alumnus, Dubbs began serving on the Board of Trustees in
1968. During his time on the board, Dubbs served as vice-chairman and
chairman and retired from the Board as a trustee emeritus. He also
served as a trustee of the Vida S. Clements Foundation and as president
of the Westerville Business Men’s Association, the Westerville Rotary
Club, and Hardware Wholesalers, Inc.
Dubbs and Marilou Dubbs speaking at the Roush Hall dedication.
Dubbs and Marilou made the lead $2 million gift to build Roush Hall,
which was dedicated on June 12, 1993. They also were the leading private
donors of the new Memorial Stadium, which was dedicated on September
Otterbein has awarded Dubbs the honors of an honorary doctorate of
business administration degree, the Distinguished Service Award and the
Distinguished Alumni Award. He also was a member of the inaugural
Otterbein Athletic Hall of Fame class.
He is survived by his wife, Marliou; two sons and three daughters.
Their daughters, Wendy ’71 and Cynthia ’80, and son Larry ’76 also
graduated from Otterbein.
Alumnus and former Otterbein employee Jack Pietilia ’61 shares,
“Dubbs was like a second father to me when I was at Otterbein. I worked
for him at the hardware store that was first in Uptown and then in the
summer of 1960 helped him move to the new Schrock location. I often saw a
cute 12- year-old around the place that summer as I served as a stock
boy and all round gofer. Her name was Wendy. I have so many great
memories of a great man and his family. I’m sure we all have them and
we’ll all miss Dubbs Roush.”
Otterbein President Kathy Krendl adds, “Dubbs epitomized the culture
of Otterbein. He was a caring and giving individual who made lasting
friendships. His engagement with the Otterbein community, Westerville
community and beyond has left us in a better place. We are grateful for
having Dubbs in our lives. Our thoughts are with Marilou and the