The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Faces of Domestic Violence

October 13, 2012

Joshua Delph: 'He was a really good kid'

ANDERSON, Ind. — At 9, Joshua Delph hadn’t quite figured out what he wanted to be when he grew up. But his family suspects whatever it was, he would use his mind.

“He was such a smart guy,” his aunt, Julie Baker, said proudly. “It would have been something scientific or mechanical for sure.”

But Joshua never had the chance to achieve those dreams. The boy and his mother, Robynn Delph, 41, were found dead from smoke inhalation in their Anderson home on May 17, 2004. Anderson Fire Department officials said the blaze was intentionally set.

Joshua’s father and Robynn’s husband, Rex David Delph, 45, was charged with two counts of murder and arson in connection with the fire, but charges would be dropped; the case went to the Indiana Court of Appeals, which in 2007 set a deadline for the state to pursue charges. However, Delph died of cancer in 2009.

Julie said that her daughter, Becka, and Joshua were like twins, only four months apart. Anytime Joshua would come to spend time with Robynn’s family in Ohio, the children were inseparable.

“The two of them would ride bikes all over town, go to the local fairgrounds and just run around,” Julie said. “This many years later it still tears us all up inside.”

Julie laughed a little as she recalled the last time she saw her nephew.

“He told me this long, long, long story,” she said emphatically. “He was so creative. And just before he died he was really coming into his own. It was obvious that he was a very intelligent guy — scientific as well as creative. What a storyteller.”

Julie said these two losses tore the family apart inside yet brought them together in many ways.

“We’ve always been a close family, but this just brought us so much closer,” she said.

Robynn’s father, Ralph Gasche, said that Joshua was always reading.

“Everywhere he went he had some kind of reading material with him,” he said. “He was a really good kid.”

On a trip to an amusement park, Joshua spent much of the time looking at how the roller coasters worked, enjoying that more than the thrill of the rides.

The Rev. Paul Wohlford was minister at the Delphs’ neighborhood church where the family frequently attended.

“It was devastating when it happened,” Wohlford said. “I know there are some of the children that still struggle with Josh’s death today.”

He described the boy as “extremely polite” and a good kid who, like his mom, helped others.

Days before the murders, the family had been cleaning their backyard and preparing to install a swing set for Joshua. The loss was shocking and hit the family hard, but in the end brought an already tight-knit family closer together, Julie said.

Text Only
Faces of Domestic Violence
  • 1028 news Domestic Violence illustration06 - Copy.JPG Who can stop domestic violence? You

    The elimination of abuse in relationships — with time, cooperation and commitment — is possible, said Colleen Yeakle, coordinator of the Indiana Coalition of Domestic Violence’s (ICADV) prevention initiative.

    October 27, 2012 1 Photo 5 Stories

  • Legislation comes a long way, but more change needed

    Each year the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence sets its legislative priorities based on year-round discussions with its members and legislators to see what needs are out there and what is going on in the field.

    October 27, 2012

  • 1028 news Empty Table Settings 18a.jpg Children affected by abuse too

    While some may think the atmosphere at Alternatives, the Anderson domestic violence shelter, would be a somber one, instead it is a building filled with laughter and joy.

    October 27, 2012 1 Photo

  • Gissendanner, Kristy.jpg Kristy Gissendanner: 'Vivacious and sweet'

    Six-day-old Gabrielle Gissendanner and her 18-month-old brother Michael weren’t far from their mom when Harry Gissendanner shot and killed Kristy in their Anderson home in 2004.

    October 27, 2012 1 Photo

  • John Davis: ‘Defined by your actions and inactions’

    John Davis wants his pain to make a difference. He’s hopeful sharing what he experienced and witnessed growing up will empower someone else to leave a dangerous situation or avoid it altogether.

    October 27, 2012

  • ‘It was life-altering’

    Casey Huffman should have taken her son Camdon to his first day of kindergarten this year. She should be picking out a Halloween costume for him. She should be thinking about how to help him achieve his hopes and dreams. Instead, Casey mourns over his all-too-early death.

    October 27, 2012

  • Tomlinson, Tina.tif Tina Tomlinson: 'She was a hoot'

    Tina Tomlinson was just “plain fun,” her family recalled. The mother of two and dedicated grandmother was someone family could look to for a good time.

    October 27, 2012 1 Photo

  • 1024 news Domestic violence forum 108a.jpg Domestic violence prevention is possible, expert says

    Gender stereotypes are just one thing that Todd Cawthorn and five other speakers, during a 90-minute panel discussion Tuesday night, talked about that create an environment where domestic violence is accepted.

    October 23, 2012 3 Photos

  • 1023 news Dating violence talk 33a.jpg Teens can be victims of domestic violence, too

    Dating violence has been seen locally in relationships as young as sixth grade, Alternatives Inc. prevention specialist Todd Cawthorn said.

    October 22, 2012 2 Photos

  • 1021 news pendleton town court 020.jpg Justice for victims

    While a protective order is an important piece of the legal puzzle that domestic violence victims have to solve, Judge Stephen Clase stresses to each that it is, after all, “just a piece of paper.” “They won’t stop a knife or a bullet,” he said. “I tell them they need to be on guard at all times.”

    October 20, 2012 1 Photo

Featured Ads
Online Extras
  • Where to find help

    Alternatives Inc., 24-hour crisis line
    (765) 643-0200 or (866) 593-9999
    Kandi Floyd, Christy Clark, Dara Tracy -- victim’s advocates
    Victims Assistance Program, Madison County Sheriff’s Department
    (765) 646-4078 or (765) 646-4079
    Gay Doss, Jaime Wilhoite -- victim assistance providers
    Victim Assistance Program, Madison County Prosecutor‘s Office
    (765) 641-9673
    Melinda Padgett, Karla Montgomery, Alison Lutz, Gracie Roman, Laura Evans -- victim assistance providers
    Victim Assistance Unit, Anderson Police Department
    (765) 648-6773, Lessa Johnson, Christy Jones -- victim assistance specialists
    Sowers of Seeds Counseling, Batters’ Intervention Program
    (765) 649-3452
    Vaughn Walker -- supervisor

    Anonymous The Herald Bulletin Fri, October 12
    654 days
More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Helium debate
Front page