Josh Vach

October 21, 1965 - May 15, 2019
Josh Vach

Memorial Gifts & Donations

On Wednesday, May 15, 2019, Joshua B. Vach, loving husband and restaurateur, passed away at age 53.

Josh was born October 21, 1965 to Richard and Mary Carroll Vach. He graduated from Worcester Preparatory School in 1983 and UNCW in 1987. On October 3, 2009, he married Cindy Parcell on the sand of Wrightsville Beach.

Josh grew up on the Eastern Shore of Maryland where his love for the ocean and surfing started at a young age. He was proud of the two restaurants his parents built and owned, The Quarterdeck and Wild Goose Chase in Ocean City, Maryland. He moved to Southern California after college to enjoy his love of surfing and continued to work in the restaurant industry. Surfing trips to the Baja Coast, and enjoying fish tacos on the side of the road with his surfing buddies were the inspiration for him to establish his first restaurant. In 1993, Josh opened K38 Baja Grill on Oleander Drive with the support of his father. His passion and vision to create a genuine “surf vibe” atmosphere and to serve the fish tacos he loved was truly an original concept that Wilmington instantly embraced. The success of his first location led to what is now known as the family of Live Eat Surf restaurants with a total of 8 locations.

His hands-on approach in the restaurants, hard work and relentless drive to be the best each and every day enabled him to give back to the community and help many animals in need over the years. He created Cinco de Bow Wow, an annual fundraising event, to support local animal shelters and Canines for Service. Josh was a member of the UNCW Surf Club that led him to establish the UNCW Tower 7 Surf Scholarship in 2008. It has grown into the Tower 7/WBLivesurf Scholarship. Josh supported the surf community in many other ways such as feeding the volunteers and participants in the annual Surfers Healing event on Wrightsville Beach. Josh always preferred not to be in the spotlight for his generosity and community involvement. However, many organizations over the years wanted to recognize him for his good deeds. To name a few, Josh was the UNCW Distinguished Citizen of the Year in 2015 and was inducted into Wrightsville Beach Museum’s 2014 Waterman Hall of Fame for his contribution to Beach Culture.

Josh was preceded in death by his parents, Richard Joseph Vach, and Mary Carroll Vach, his sisters Mary Elizabeth Vach, Carroll Vach England, and by his beloved dog Wyatt. Josh is survived by his wife Cindy and their treasured dog Gunner, his sister Martha Vach Redding, his brothers Richard Joseph (Jr) and Thomas Carville Vach, along with numerous in-laws, nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews.

There will be two Celebrations of Life. One in Wilmington and the other in Ocean City, MD. Details will be announced at a later date in each community.

Contributions in his memory can be made to:
Tower 7/WBLiveSurf Scholarship: Hope From Helen P.O.Box 187 Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480
(Please note the name of the scholarship on the tax deductible donation. Email donation questions to Tony Butler –
Cinco de Bow Wow Organizations: Paws Place Dog Rescue, Pender County Human Society, C.A.R.E. – Coastal Animal Rescue Effort, New Hanover County Animal Services Unit, Adopt An Angel, Canines For Service

Please share memories and condolences with the family by clicking on the ” Post a Condolence ” tab below.

Wilmington Funeral & Cremation, 1535 S. 41st Street, Wilmington NC 28403 910.791.9099

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  • May 19, 2019
    J, Skipper Funderburg & Family says:
    May the Fergus – Funderburg Family of Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina express our deepest sympathy for the loss of Joshua B. ‘Josh‘ Vach. We have lost a hero who defended our way of life and a prominent citizen that brought honor to our region. His rise to superstardom wasn’t hurt either by his friendly good looks and his winning personality. It is with a heavy heart when we heard of his passing. I met Josh about twenty years ago and had the good fortune to work with him. The task was completed on schedule and my side was gratis. We compared our experiences in at K 38.5 Baja Mexico, encrusted sea urchins got Josh & sharp rocks got me. Josh was inducted into the 2014 Wrightsville Beach Museum Waterman Hall of Fame – Beach Culture, and I was inducted into the same category in 2015. It is a lifetime achievement for both of us, and I am humbled to be in the same category. Josh was supremely proud of his immediate family and their outstanding achievements in pursuit of excellence. He was delighted at their many victories and durable organizations they were loyal to. He protected in whose love we live and those that are dear to us, including all of his friends, Maryland family, Community and animals. We are profoundly saddened to hear of his passing. He has left his earthly life to be with God. Peace be with you, J. Skipper Funderburg & Family

  • May 19, 2019
    Kent Tomaselli says:
    There are many reasons why Wilmington, NC is considered one of the best places in the country to live. Josh and his many contributions is certainly one of them.

  • May 18, 2019
    Mary Duke Barnwell says:
    Cindy, you are in my prayers..sending big love to all of you!

  • May 18, 2019
    Beth Dudley lit a candle:
    Lit since May 18, 2019 at 5:36:51 PM

  • May 18, 2019
    dave says:
    I am so sorry for your loss , Loosing a loved one is traumatic and very difficult. However the Bible says at Rev. 21:4 - “ And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.” May the God who gives us this comfort be with the family at this time