Captain Lee Rosbach has been a staple on Bravo’s Below Deck for seven seasons.
Sadly, over the summer, the famous captain made headlines for the loss of his son. In July, Captain Lee shared the tragic news his son Josh passed away from a drug overdose.
The Bravo star shared a brief statement at the time revealing, he and his wife Mary Anne lost their son to “his demons.” Josh struggled with addiction for twenty years, according to Captain Lee.
For the first time since the tragic death, the Below Deck star has broken his silence on Josh’s passing. He also revealed his struggle to learn to live life without his youngest son.
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This past Saturday, my beloved wife Mary Anne and I laid our youngest son, Joshua Lee Rosbach to rest. After a twenty year struggle, he finally succumbed to the demons he fought so long and so hard. Addiction is an insidious disease that knows no social status or geographic boundaries. Whether you live in a 10,000 sq ft mansion or a double wide trailer, the path of death, destruction and devastation it leaves remains the same. We loved Josh unconditionally and were proud of the man he had become in spite of his problems. There was no one i ever knew who gave more of himself to those in his life. He loved with all his being without expecting anything in return. We both feel a hole in our souls that will never be filled. So my message to those of you who are fighting this disease, find a way to get help no matter what. For those of you who have a friend, family member, son, or daughter who's struggling, do what ever it takes to get them the help they need. Be kind and loving, and try to enjoy every second you have with them. Do not pray for our son, but please take care of your children and friends who may need it, as it isn’t too late for them. Captain & Mary Anne
In an interview with Page Six, Captain Lee reveals Josh had been doing much better before his death. Mary Anne and her husband thought their child had turned a corner.
Josh had been off drugs for six months, was working, and even had a DUI conviction removed from his record. The worried parents thought they were finally going to be able to put that part of their lives behind him.
On July 22, Captain Lee drove to Josh’s Fort Lauderdale apartment, where he found his son. At first, he thought Josh was passed out, but the 42-year-old was dead.
“I hate going to sleep, and I hate waking up. There’s a hole there that can’t be filled. And the person who said, ‘time heals all wounds,’ is full of it. It doesn’t. The only thing that time may do for you is allow you to learn the skills you need to cope with the situation that you’re dealing with. As parents, you’re not designed to bury your children,” Captain Lee shared with Page Six.
Life as the Rosbach family knew it, is forever changed. The captain shared that he doesn’t laugh as much anyone and being alone is the hardest part for him. It is those times, where his guilt can overtake him.
Captain Lee thinks Josh began using drugs as a way to self-medicate. Josh was always very anxious but did not want to go to a doctor to talk about his issue.
The Bravo star admits a car accident where Josh sustained two broken feet and was prescribed painkillers fueled his drug battle.
By sharing Josh’s story, Captain Lee and Mary Anne hope to help other families that have suffered the same loss or are dealing with addiction right now.
“There’s a lot of guilt that comes with something like this. What if I’d gone over to his house sooner? What if I’d done this? What if I’d done that? I should have made his life easier. So you carry around a tremendous amount of guilt. And then you have to stop and realize that you can’t prevent the inevitable,” Captain Lee shared.
One thing that is helping the heartbroken father deal with the loss of his son is throwing himself into work. The crew is currently still filming Season 7, and it has been a blessing for the captain.
Below Deck airs Mondays at 9/8c on Bravo.