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Hanover's district judge loved job and hometown, worked right up to his death

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch

Hanover District Judge Dwayne A. Dubs loved his hometown — the small-town feel of it, the sense of community and the fact that many of his family members still live close to the borough where he was born and raised.

Dubs, 60, died Monday at Hanover Hospital, according to his obituary from Wetzel Funeral Home. His death was due to complications following a two-year battle with cancer, according to wife Daune Dubs.

"He loved Hanover," she told The York Dispatch.

Aside from a few-week leave of absence last month for a hospital stay, Dubs was still working, Daune Dubs said.

"He felt very blessed and privileged to be the district judge of Hanover," she said. "He was proud to follow in his dad's footsteps."

Hanover District Judge Dwayne A. Dubs

Dubs is the son of retired longtime Hanover magisterial district judge Mervin Dubs, who still lives in Hanover.

The sitting district judge "made every effort" to do his job in the two years since he was diagnosed with cancer, Daune Dubs said.

"Even when he was in the hospital I would take papers to him so he could sign them," she said, and noted he completed part of his state-required continuing education from a hospital bed.

He worked while sick "because he was dedicated to his job. He was proud of his job," his wife said. Dubs was a three-term district judge and held the job for 15 years.

"He would get emotional every election, that he was privileged enough that people voted him in again," Daune Dubs said.

'Distinguished jurist': "Judge Dubs was a distinguished jurist who served the citizens of York County with dignity," Pennsylvania State Court Administrator Geoff Moulton said. "He represented the judiciary with honor and distinction throughout his many years on the bench. On behalf of the AOPC, I offer our sincerest condolences to his family, friends and loved ones during these difficult times."

Dubs' office staff members are devastated, according to his wife.

"He treated his staff like family and he loved them," she said. "They loved him back."

The judge was all about family, Daune Dubs said. He also was a member of Hanover First Church of God.

In his free time he enjoyed golfing and had been playing for decades. He also got his wife interested in the sport.

"It was nice for us to go out for an afternoon together — just me and him — and go play golf," she said. "That's a really good memory."

Talented woodworker: He also enjoyed woodworking and carpentry and made furniture for his family and himself.

"He made me a wine rack that is very beautiful, and he made a bookshelf that I have family pictures on," Daune Dubs said. The bookshelf is quite special to her, she said.

Dubs didn't simply copy a pattern when woodworking — he created his own, according to his wife. She said it was a way for him to express himself artistically.

Senior district judges, meaning retired ones, will be handling work at Dubs' 203 Dart Drive office, the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts said on Wednesday.

In addition to his widow, parents and stepparents, Dubs is survived by three children, four stepchildren, a sister, a brother and six grandchildren, whom he loved spending time with, his wife said.

Services are private. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society, 924 N. Colonial Ave., York 17403.

— Reach senior crime reporter Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.