Al recently reminded us of the horse barn
he built after "The War" (WW II) for Marlynn his younger
sister when they lived in Sacramento. Although they lived
two hours apart, Marlynn and Al enjoyed a special connection
over the years. They regularly met for lunch and spoke
frequently on the phone.
Al received his Bachelor of Arts degree
from Sacramento State University in 1947 (first graduating
class). He received his Masters in Government Administration
degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Quality
education was very important to Al. He was the initial
founding member of Sacramento Lutheran High School in Elk
Grove, California. He spent many hours coordinating the
establishment of this high school.
He participated in the reunions of his
75th Infantry Division over the years. He and Jessie (his
wife of 52 years) loved to travel to the reunion locations
around the country, see the historical sites and meet up
with his army friends. Al was even voted as "Man of the
Year," for his famous collection of soldier memoirs. He was
very dedicated to preserving the memories and historical
accuracy of the war experiences of the soldiers.
Alís family and friends remember quite
well the story about when he read in an historical book on
WW II that the Battle of the Bulge was an "unmitigated
disaster." He became fiercely determined to prove this
statement wrong and thus began his detailed research though
his own first-hand recollections from his WW II diary and
though countless interviews and collection of personal
recollections of his counterparts in the Battle of the
Bulge. The collection of these works can be found in major
universities around the world and on the internet.
Al was employed by the State of
California for 37 years. He was a dedicated and tireless
worker. He took his work quite seriously. The work ethic he
demonstrated is very rarely seen. There was a job to do and
he gave it his all. He loved to solve problems. He
unselfishly contributed to the success of others. He had no
ambition in his work other than to do his best. He was a
most honest and genuine man., contributing to the success of
the departments and others. He loved to offer assistance to
others and help them succeed. He even avoided the
spot-light. He was not interested in self recognition. In
fact, he avoided it.
During his 37 career with the State, he
worked in many departments, Finance, Highways, Conservation,
and State Teachers Retirement. He worked as an Executive,
the highest level of "non-appointed" service.
In addition to his work at the State,
Alfred taught college in the evenings for 25 years. He loved
to teach and help others succeed. He taught at American
River, Sacramento State and at the graduate level for Golden
Gate University. Two of his sons had the opportunity to
participate in his classes. He was very proud of a "small
group" method of teaching that he developed and perfected,
enabling maximum participation of the students. He worked to
bring each student to an A grade. Once the school
administration criticized him for giving too many "A"s.
Alfred rebutted, "Isnít the objective to bring each student
to an "A" level?" This is a small example of the dedication
he demonstrated in his work.
Alfred was married to his wonderful wife
Jessie for 52 years. He was a great provider and loving
husband. Although he was not very "mushy," he loved his wife
more than words can express. Jessie was such a devout and
loving wife. She supported her husband in the most unselfish
fashion. Together, they were a great husband and wife team.
They raised three boys, David, Jim and Will. They also
played such a key role in their grand-childrenís (Rachel and
Zachary) and great-grandchildís (Teresa) lives. The team of
Al & Jessie always put their children, grand-children and
great-grandchildís lives first, sacrificing so much for
their pride and joys.
Alfred loved to participate and attend
all of our activities and sporting events; Boy Scouts, 4-H,
baseball, soccer, Tae Kwon Do, running events, triathlons
and basketball. If there was an event, he had to be there.
We were all so encouraged by his unbelievable support. He
was the best cheerleader, coach, advisor, trainer, etc. We
all knew we could do well because of his positive
In recent years, he loved to attend his
grandsonís basketball games. He never missed one. After the
games, he would speak of Zachís great performance for hours
with his family and friends. Even during his weakest hours
in his final days, when we reminded him of Zachís basketball
games, he managed the biggest and brightest grin you ever
He loved his family. He wanted and gave
his best to his family. He is the best example of a man;
honest, sincere, honorable, modest, unselfish in his giving,
dedicated, hard working and compassionate. We will do our
best to continue his example.
Throughout his life, he loved to solve
problems. In these last few years he was stricken with
polycystic kidney disease. One would never know he was
suffering. He never let on that he was sick. It was only in
the last few months that he made the choice for dialysis
treatment. He told us several times in the last few weeks,
that this disease is a problem he couldnít solve. In the
last few weeks, he decided to let his body take its natural
course. He was sure of his decision because of his love for
God and assurance of his salvation. His struggle was to make
sure his family would be ok when he was gone. He was
comforted to know we would continue to support each other in
a manner that he taught us.
Recently, we read together from
Revelation 21:4, "And He will wipe away every tear from
their eyes; and death will be no more, nor will there be
sorrow or crying or pain anymore; for the former things have
passed away." He stated with a strong conviction, "I believe
Alfred always wanted to know "what is the
plan." He was an extremely organized man. He developed
plans, and carried them out. He often asked his doctors and
nurses, "What is the plan?" In his last few days and even
just prior to going to be with the Lord, he asked, "What is
the plan, i.e., how will this passing play out?" We told
him, "Dad, the plan is to rest." "We solved together
the problem, rest." With these final words, he walked into
the arms of our Lord.
Al, Dad, Papa-Al, we miss you terribly.
We are happy that you are freed from the struggles of your
physical body. We look forward to the day that we can be
together again. We will carry on in a manner that would make
you proud. Thank you for all you have done. We love you.
The family requests no flowers be sent,
but if you so choose to do something to celebrate this great
manís life Ė please send a donation to:
The Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation