Joseph F. Ulrich, 59

Joseph F. Ulrich, 59, of Lancaster, PA, died at Lancaster General Hospital on Wednesday, November 23, 2011. Born in Lancaster and raised on Cabbage Hill, he was the son of  F. Joseph Ulrich of Wayne, PA and the late Julianne Ortlieb Ulrich. Joe graduated from Lancaster Catholic High School and attended Franklin and Marshall College.

He was married to Patricia Sydansk Ulrich of Landisville. Joe is also survived by his two children: Margaret Ulrich Simpson and Joseph O’Donnell Ulrich, both of Lancaster, and five brothers: Carl, married to Debbie Ulrich of Strasburg, Michael married to Vicki Ulrich of Lancaster, and Mark, Kurt, and Brian Ulrich , all of the Philadelphia area; aunts Dolores McNee, Mary Ann Smith, and Judy Reese of Lancaster and many cousins, nieces and nephews.

Joe worked in the automobile business. He owned and operated Ulrich Foreign Car Service on Columbia Ave. for many years. He later was the Service Manager at Ladd Motors in Lebanon, PA, and Chester Cadillac Jaguar in Baltimore, MD. During the 1970s, he was a Democratic Committeeman for the 8th Ward, 2nd Precinct and remained active in party politics. He was an assistant to the late John C. Pittenger during his term as PA Secretary of Education. He enjoyed sports car racing, boating, and Pabst Blue Ribbon.

Joe was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, Germania Band Club, the Lincoln Highway Assn. and the American Lighthouse Assn.

Friends will be received on Monday, November 28, 2011 from 10-11AM at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 440 St. Joseph St., Lancaster, PA, with the Mass to follow at 11AM, Msgr Thomas Smith as Celebrant. Interment in St. Joseph New Catholic Cemetery.  In lieu of flowers, please make contributions in his memory to the American Cancer Society, 314 Good Drive, Lancaster, PA 17603. To send an online condolence, please visit: Charles F. Snyder Funeral Home & Crematory 393-9661

Leave a condolence on this Memorial Page

Be sure to include your name

Please note that your condolence will not appear on this page until it is reviewed. Condolences usually appear within 24 hours of being submitted.

Condolences to the Family

November 22, 2018

November 22, 2018
Joe passed away in 2011, so I doubt that anyone will now read this; but I’m hoping that someone does, because it is about one of Joe’s cars, maybe his last, that has landed in the hands of someone who cares for it with the same mechanical intelligence and appreciation for the machine, that Joe no doubt bestowed upon it.
Two years ago I purchased a 1985 Jaguar XJ6 from a Columbia Law graduate. He had purchased the car at an estate sale in Pennsylvania, then shipped the car to Los Angeles. When he was hired for a job with the U.S. State Department he decided to sell the car rather than ship it back to the East Coast. I bought it.
This Jag was/is, in incredibly good condition. The service record book shows that it was always serviced at the exact mileage intervals at The New Cheasapeake Cadillac Jaguar dealership in Baltimore. And it shows that at mileage 111,971, ownership was transferred to J.F. Ulrich of Lancaster, PA – Joe. 
When I inspected the car I just knew that this car was special, that it had been pampered and cared for meticulously. It had two Jaguar OEM tool kits, a Jaguar fender protector used by dealer mechanics. It had been fitted with XJS wheels (lovely) and a Moto-Lita steering wheel. I knew this car had been owned by a gear-head – like me. The leather Owner’s Handbook still has Joe’s dealership business card in it:
Joseph F. Ulrich, Jaguar Service Manager.
Tonight I decided to look up who the previous owner was. I googled Joe’s name and when I read his Obituary, and the condolences left by his friends, I felt moved to post this little bit of history about one of Joe’s cars, his Jaguar XJ6. What’s interesting is that there are so many similarities between Joe on the East Coast and me, here on the West Coast, in the San Francisco area. My first car, in high school, was a 1956 VW Karmann Ghia. Next was a 1956 Porsche Speedster, which I raced a few times in local SCCA events. I sold that car when I purchased a 1960 Jaguar Mark IV 3.8 Sedan from my uncle, who was a serious car restorer in the 60’s – 70’s.  Sitting in my driveway now, next to Joe’s Jag (I’ll always think of it now in that way) is a 1972 Alfa Romeo Spyder and a 1973 Alfa Romeo Berlina, both under restoration. I do all my own mechanical work. I love my cars. In the same way that I’m sure Joe loved his. 
Joe must be smiling up there to know that someone is caring for his Jag with the same meticulous mechanical attention that he bestowed upon it. And I am so pleased to know that by pure luck or fortune I aquired this very special Jaguar.
I just turned 72 a few days ago. My son, a 2nd generation gearhead, is 38. And when I pass, this XJ6 will become his and will be cared for with the same meticulous care that it has always had. 
Warm regards to all of you who knew and loved Joe. 
Craig Brooks
Vallejo, California

Pat & Family
So sorry about Joe may you get some comfort from that fact the Joe is now in heaven with some of the best freinds he has not seen in a long time. I know that my dad (Kenny Engle) is waiting for him to take him on a road trip. I remember him from our afternoons @ the Band Club, what a great time we all had.  He now has no pain and is @ peace.
Kim Engle Bausher (

So sorry to hear of Joe’s passing.  I enjoyed my many years working with Joe at Chesapeake Jaguar and keeping in touch with him over the years.  He was such a warm and caring person.  Please accept my deepest condolences to you and your family.

Dave Watkins and Family

My deepest sympathies go out to Joe’s family, wife, children, father and brothers.  Words cannot express the sorrow I feel in knowing of his death.  My sister and I have known Joe since we were in St Joseph’s School and growing up on the "Hill" together.  My husband, Howell, who died last year, and Joe were great friends and "Motor Heads" in High School and beyond.  Joe was my daughter, Laura’s, Godfather.  It has been many years since we were in touch but the memories of time spent in Joe’s company are happy ones of youth and good times.  May you find peace and comfort with your memories of Joe.
The Ronck sisters, Monica Hatton and Susan Beck

Dear Margaret and Joe,
  I am sorry that I was unable to attend your Father’s Celebration of Life.  He was a good man and a great friend.  Give my best to your Mother and Pat.  Take care of each other.

Jon Reidenbaugh

I was startled and saddened to receive that dreadful phone call from Pat letting me know of Joe’s passing. I was just with him the week before, talking about cars, family, and life in general, the things I know he enjoyed reminiscing about. Knowing Joe since I was teenager and keeping in touch over the years, I know it gave him great pleasure to see how my brother Michael, sister Tania, and I, matured into adulthood, experiencing life’s trials and tribulations, safely without being injured in some freak accident or being plagued with illness as he was towards the end of his own life. It pained me to see him deal with the issues he had to deal with, staying where he was staying, with the stench of illness and death all around him, everyday and every hour. He was better than that. His mind was knowledgeable of great, interesting things that we enjoyed talking about for hours, cars, engines, machines, how to fix things, understanding why things break, and why things last. Language as well. That was Joe. A renaissance man. I know he is in a better place helping those understand how things work, and why things don’t. I felt on the days visiting him that he had an innate wanting another person well, as he had wished that person would have wanted him well. Whether it being in this life or the next. And he knew his day would come eventually. And I know he would not want us to cry in vain over his passing, but rejoice in a new life and a new beginning. I know he is driving a Lamborghini some where! Stay well Joe, I will miss you always.

My sincerest condolences,
John Palumbo

I was a customer of Joe’s long ago. I had a Lotus Europa and as Joe also had one, I figured he was the guy to be my mechanic.  He really cared about the car and he really cared about the customer.  I remember him telling me that if it looked like I was going to hit something, that I should quickly pull my feet up!  I knew absolutely nothing about cars back then.

I called Joe once to report a serious handling problem with the Lotus. He listened intently and told me not to drive it; rather he’d come out and look at it in my garage in back of N. Duke Street.  He checked it out and said I could drive it, very slowly, over to his shop on Columbia Ave.  I thought that showed extraordinary concern for my well-being.  I was embarrassed to tell him that the suspension link had broken during a track day at Bridgehampton and that I’d driven it back home from Long Island in the rain.

I didn’t know Joe well but he probably saved my butt more than I know by caring about the car and caring about his customers.  God speed, Joe Ulrich.
 – Jim Kearney   

Send Flowers Online

Offering Lancaster, PA funeral services for over 70 years.

Our five funeral homes in Lancaster County makes it easy and convenient to make arrangements and host services close to home.

  • Charles F. Snyder Funeral Home Downtown Lancaster
  • 414 East King St.
  • 717-393-9661
  • Charles F. (Chip) Snyder, Jr. Funeral Director / Supervisor
  • more info
  • Charles F. Snyder Funeral Home Lititz Pike
  • 3110 Lititz Pike
  • 717-560-5100
  • Charles F. (Chad) Snyder, III Funeral Director / Supervisor
  • more info
  • Charles F. Snyder Funeral Home Millersville
  • 441 North George St.
  • 717-872-5041
  • Mark D. Burkholder Funeral Director / Supervisor
  • more info
  • Spacht-Snyder Family Funeral Home Lititz, PA
  • 127 South Broad St.
  • 717-626-2317
  • Jacqueline Adamson Funeral Director / Supervisor
  • more info
  • Bachman-Snyder Funeral Home & Crematory Strasburg, PA
  • 7 South Decatur Street
  • 717-687-7644
  • Norman T. Mable Funeral Director / Supervisor
  • more info