Cover photo for David F.  Risch's Obituary
David F.  Risch Profile Photo
1930 David 2023

David F. Risch

November 21, 1930 — April 30, 2023

On Saturday evening, April 30, 2023, Bishop David F. Risch stepped from this world into life eternal. He is now experiencing the reality of what his heart and soul has longed for.

David was born November 21, 1930, to George Finley Risch and Henrietta (Nulph) Risch on the family farm in Cherry Valley, Pennsylvania. A few years later his father sold that farm and purchased another in Volant, Pennsylvania. David was only 16 when his father passed away, and after that he and his brother continued working the farm to support their mother and sisters.

He met the lovely Alvera Croyle at a church revival in Pennsylvania. He and Alvera were married on July 23, 1954. They were an incredible team for 68 years and had a storybook relationship. Their life together exemplified what a marriage can be.

He served in the U.S. Army at the end of the Korean Conflict, and was deployed soon after their wedding to Germany and Austria. Following the army he worked at Sharon Steel Corporation in Sharon, Pennsylvania. The Lord called him to ministry in 1963, and not long after he went into full time pastoral ministry.

He served in the Church of God of Prophecy as a pastor in Sharon, Karns City, and New Eagle Pennsylvania, as well as State Overseer in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maryland & D.C., and Virginia. David retired from the Church of God of Prophecy in 1991. He then went on to serve The Church of God as Field Secretary to the General Overseer, General Church Prophecy Marker (CPMA) Coordinator, General Bible Training Institute (BTI) Coordinator, along with several other general appointments and committees until his second retirement at age 72.

The immense depth of his love for God was evident in the way he lived his life, and how he served God, his church, and others. He was passionate about youth camp and worked diligently in the camping ministry. He also cared deeply about the mission field, and generously supported God’s work. David was also a ‘builder.’ Throughout his ministry he remodeled, updated and built churches, parsonages, campgrounds, as well as helped facilitate the current building that houses The Church of God International Offices. He worked tirelessly, serving with excellence in every area he was assigned to. In his own words, he “counted it a privilege to work for Christ in the great Church of God.”

He dearly loved his family and was proud of each of them.

He and Alvera loved antique malls and flea markets, and after retirement they spent several days each week enjoying this pastime.

He was preceded in death by his parents, an infant sister, his sister Esther Roudebush, brothers Lee and Lawrence Risch, and beloved son David Risch Jr. (“Sonny”).

Surviving are his wife Alvera of 68 years, daughters Sandra McLaughlin (George) of North Carolina and Shelley Porter (David) of Blountville, TN, granddaughters Jennifer Risch, Erin Stonestreet (Austin) and Alexandria McLaughlin (Brandon Burr), great granddaughters Colin and Avery Stonestreet, daughter-in-law Donna Risch, sisters Dorothy Sayre of Texas and Margaret Sweeney of Pennsylvania, along with many nieces and nephews.

The family will receive friends on Thursday, May 4 from 11a.m. until 1:00p.m at The Church of God - Zion Hill, 193 Tillie Road NE, Cleveland, TN. A Celebration of Life will immediately follow at 1:00p.m. with Pastor Clint Pulliam and Bishop Harvey Anders officiating.

The Risch family extend their deep appreciation to the caring staff at Legacy Village and Hearth Hospice for their exemplary care and compassion.

The Risches are faithful members of The Church of God – Zion Hill in Cleveland, TN. Memorials can be sent to The Church of God Missions Department, P.O. Box 450, Charleston, TN 37310.

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.” (II Timothy 4:7-8)

You are invited to share a personal memory of David F. Risch or your condolences with his family at his online memorial located at Companion Funeral & Cremation Service Cleveland Chapel and the Cody family are honored to assist the Risch family with these arrangements.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, May 4, 2023

Starts at 1:00 pm (Central time)

The Church of God-Zion Hill

193 Tillie Drive, Cleveland, TN 37312

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