9:00 am - 10:45 am
Monday, December 11, 2023
Saint Nicholas Church
Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, United States
Obituary of Eric James Dotzel
Eric James Dotzel, Sr., 52 years old, passed away on December 3rd surrounded by his loving family and friends after a brief battle with cancer. Eric was born and raised in the Georgetown section of Wilkes-Barre Township. He was the beloved tenth child of Fred and Regina (Lavan) Dotzel and was preceded in death by his parents and his oldest brother, Fred Dotzel, Jr. Eric was a 1989 graduate of Bishop Hoban High School and received a B.S. Degree in Biology from Wilkes University. After graduation, Eric worked at Alcon Industries in Fort Worth, Texas. He also worked in the painting industry with his Dad and brothers. During the COVID pandemic, Eric worked as a lab technician, most recently for Principle Diagnostics in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Eric was a deep thinker and an avid reader who would pick up a physics, philosophy, or history book for entertainment. His quick wit and sense of humor did not waver right up until his final breath. As the youngest of ten, Eric always had older sisters and brothers to watch over him and nieces and nephews who were more like siblings. He was raised in this large, loving family and grew up to enrich their lives with his open heart. Eric had an ear for and love of music. He taught himself to play guitar and along with his cousin, Jerry Lavan and dear friends, Peter Uritz, Darius Yavorski and Jason Stefanski formed Bonejak. Bonejak shared the ride for over 20 years jamming to the Dead, Dylan and everything in between. Eric’s lead vocals and talent on the electric and acoustic guitars will be cherished and remembered by his loyal fans. Outside of Bonejak, Eric and Peter fed off each other’s energy and love of music to create an indescribable friendship and seamless jams. Eric loved concerts, skiing and traveling. He never hesitated to walk up to strangers in need and befriend them. Eric had two families. His beloved large biological family and his sober community. He owes the last wonderful chapter in his life to the men and women who befriended him, empowered him, and allowed him to realize what a beautiful life sobriety had to offer. He went on to sponsor young people to show them the path and empower them. There are a couple of men who would say they owe their lives to Eric; because of his guidance, they were able to remain sober. He died a humble, grateful, sober man. Eric’s greatest legacy, however, is his beautiful children, Cassidy and Eric Jr. He loved nothing more than spending time with them, telling stories, hiking, going to amusement parks and most of all enjoying the peace and beauty of lakes. Their laughter and the pure joy of seeing them together will forever live in our hearts. To know Eric was to love him and for that we are forever grateful. Eric is survived by his children, Cassidy and Eric Dotzel Jr., stepson Dylan Andes, their mother, Becky, eight siblings; Jean Zimmerman, Kathleen (Tim) Knight, Maureen (Don) Savner, Angela (Jerry) Naperkowski, Peggy Dotzel (Eric Mogilnicki), Bill (Joan) Dotzel Sr., Colleen (Doug) Pomfret and Michael (Michelle) Dotzel, sister-in-law Joan Dotzel, twenty four nieces and nephews, twenty eight great nieces and nephews, many cousins, several aunts, and countless friends. A celebration of Eric’s life will begin with a Visitation for family and friends from 9:00 to 10:45 am on Monday, December 11, 2023 in Saint Nicholas Church, 226 South Washington Street in Wilkes-Barre. A Mass of Christian burial will follow at 11:00 am. Interment will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to Eric Dotzel’s memorial fund which can be found on Go-Fund me to benefit Eric’s minor children Cassidy and Eric Jr. Eric was a spiritual man and was not afraid to leave this world, but he was devastated that he would no longer be here for Cassidy and Eric. Condolences may be sent by visiting Eric’s obituary at www.natandgawlas.com. Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Nat Gawlas Jordan Funeral Home, 89 Park Avenue, Wilkes-Barre.