The Tragic Death Of 'Welcome To Plathville's' 17-Month-Old Son Joshua Plath In 2008

It changed their lives forever.

The Plath Family TLC / YouTube

There’s no shortage of strange family life and relationships on TLC shows, and one of their most interesting series, Welcome to Plathville, once again shows us the daily lives in a huge family.

The Plath family has 11 members, who were all living on a 55-acre farm in Georgia with their matriarch mom, Kim Plath, and their father, Barry Plath when the show first started.

And though it’s interesting to see how they live, Kim and Barry Plath experienced major tragedy when their 17-month-old son, Joshua, died in 2008.


How did Kim Plath's son die?

Read on for the heartbreaking story of Joshua's untimely death, and how the Plath family used their faith to get them through their toughest days.

RELATED: Meet The 9-Kid, No-Technology Plath Family Featured In New TLC Show 'Welcome To Plathville'


Kim Plath opened up about the tragedy on the family's website.

In a heartbreaking post on the family’s website, which is currently down or under construction as of the time this article was published, Kim wrote about the day her son passed away in a tragic accident. 

She wrote:

“In the fall of 2008 I was transplanting fruit trees with our Suburban, pregnant with our 8th child. I looked for our 17-month-old Joshua, saw that he was away from the vehicle, then pulled forward to get the next tree. In a panic, I realized what had happened. I ran over our Joshua. I lived the next hour nonstop in my brain for the next 8 months.

My husband Barry followed an ambulance home from work that day. Joshua died before he got there. I lived in Hell on earth. I woke up every morning and functioned. But just barely. I wanted to die.”

RELATED: Federal Agents May Have Raided The Duggar Compound — Here's What We Know


How did Kim Plath recover from Joshua's tragic death?

It’s been over 10 years since that day, and as Kim noted, she’s back to her normal self. Recounting how she bounced back, she wrote:

“My husband was dealing with losing his son and his wife. I was gone. Checked out. Unavailable for conversations or reality. If someone said Joshua’s name I had to leave the room...

Mother’s day weekend, God healed me. I can’t explain it other than He re-wrote the bad coding in my brain. He took the ruts in my brain that had been running that same movie in my mind and filled them with His Spirit.

The movie stopped. I wanted to live again. I was with my family again. I could hear Joshua’s name and I could talk about him again. My sweet husband, through his patience, love, and faith, got his wife back.”

How did Joshua Plath die? His death was ruled an accident.

The death of Joshua was ruled accidental by the Grady County Sheriff’s Office.

At the time, according to investigator Daniel Singletary, “The mother was pulling the vehicle forward — she had been doing yard work — and thought she had accounted for all the kids. She had seven children, ages 15 months to 10 years old, and they were all outside playing."


"She thought everyone was accounted for, moved the vehicle forward and discovered she’d run over the youngest,” he added.

Joshua was pronounced dead at the scene.

And though Kim and her family have moved past the accident and have healed using their faith, Joshua’s death has also impacted the way they treat their other kids. 



A post shared by TLC Welcome To Plathville (@welcometoplathville) on Nov 26, 2019 at 7:42am PST

On an episode during the first season, the children pushed back against their parents, unhappy with their strict lifestyle.


Barry and Kim revealed that since Joshua’s passing, they’ve been afraid of losing their other children, perhaps putting them on a leash that’s too tight.

What religion does the Plath family follow on Welcome to Plathville?

The Plath family are devout Christians, although they do not specify which sector of Christianity they follow. 

When does Welcome to Plathville season 2 premiere?

You can catch the season 2 premiere of Welcome to Plathville on TLC on Tuesday, Nov. 10 at 10 p.m. ET.


RELATED: Meet Kim Plath — Controversial Matriarch Of Family Raising 9 Kids Technology-Free On TLC's 'Welcome To Plathville'

Samantha Maffucci is an editor for YourTango who focuses on writing trending news and entertainment pieces. In her free time, you can find her obsessing about cats, wine, and all things Vanderpump Rules.