After nearly four decades in Marysville, local dentist Dr. Gregory Gosch, DDS, DICOI, will be retiring and transferring his practice to dentist Dr. Dan Hwang, DDS.
Dr. Gosch began his career 39 years ago in Marysville practicing with a couple of other dentists in the area on 47th Street, however opened his own office on Grove Street 23 years ago.
He said he enjoyed getting to know the numerous people who have come into his office over the years.
"My favorite part of dentistry here in Marysville is the wonderful relationships that have been developed over the years and helping people maintain their teeth," he said.
He described his patients as an extended family.
"You're so close to people and you see them two or three times a year. You see them on an on-going basis so you learn about their lives, their families, their children," he said.
Local Alan Hjort has been a patient of Dr. Gosch's for more than three decades and was one of his first patients when he came in for some emergency dental work.
"I liked to talked to him and he listened," said Hjort. "I kind of consider him a friend as well as my doctor. If I needed to talk to somebody, I could talk to him," he said.
Dr. Gosch said he enjoyed helping people learn how to take care of their teeth.
"I feel blessed being a dentist because I could help people at all different levels of age," he said.
Seeing those patients that "stayed with the program" and were always able to keep healthy teeth was "really rewarding," he said.
Gosch also said he will miss the bonds formed during the job. "I'll miss the friendships with my staff, the relationships with the patients," he said.
Dental assistant Cindy Fox said Dr. Gosch has always imparted a lot of knowledge to his co-workers.
"He's taught us a lot, above and beyond what a lot of dental assistants know," she said.
Fox also said they always had good banter and often fun at the job.
Dr. Gosch plans to do missionary dental work in his retirement years, possibly in Uganda, he said. He also wants to travel with his wife and they have plans to go along the coast of Oregon and up to Alaska.
Incoming dentist Dr. Dan Hwang bought the practice this August and is keeping the former staff of the office.
Dr. Hwang was an associate dentist in Maple Valley and in Monroe before coming to Marysville this summer.
"Dr. Gosch is a fabulous dentist. High quality, high standard. He's a rare, one-of-a-kind guy. I feel blessed taking on his practice, and at the same time, a lot of responsibility filling in his shoes," he said.
He hopes he can do "halfway as good of a job" as Dr. Gosch.
"I'd like to get to know the community. I feel like I'm part of it now. If there are dental related questions or opinions I'm just another opinion, but if you want it you can come in and chat," he said.