Holiday World owner passes away at age 48
Published: June 14, 2010 at 7:24 AM
We are heartbroken. Our beloved leader, Will Koch, passed away last night. We believe it was due to his Type 1 diabetes. Please say a prayer for the family and for all of us here at the park. He was so much more than a boss, he was a dear, sweet friend. As we know he would have wanted, the park will be open today and we'll all try our best to smile and provide wonderful memories to the families who visit us. And also as Will wanted, the park will remain owned and operated by his family.
Editor's note: Stunning. Yeah, I'm supposed to be a writer, but I can't possibly articulate anything that expresses how crushed I feel as a theme park fan, nor how many of you surely feel.
Holiday World's The Voyage won our Best Theme Park Attraction Tournament this spring, and I heard from multiple sources how thrilled Will was to earn that honor.
I never met Will Koch, but he was one of the good folks in the theme park business, someone who helped build what was once a roadside attraction into a world-class theme park. And he did it, as everyone who has done that, through an obsessive focus on customer service. For that, we are all grateful.
Koch is survived by his wife, Lori, and three children: Lauren, Leah, and William. He is also survived by his mother, Pat, and siblings Dan, Kristi, Philip and Natalie.
Let's send our condolences to the Koch and Holiday World families, via the comments.
(Update (June 16): Since the death of a person in his 40s is somewhat unusual, I thought that I should note for the record that the coroner reports that Koch drowned in the family's swimming pool.)