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Alfred John Pearce, Sr.

Al Pearce was born in his family's humble brick home on February 28, 1914, in Trafford, Pennsylvania. Al was the fifth child of Sarah Martha Williams Pearce and Thomas Charles Pearce. Later, they would have one more child. In 1920, the Pearce family moved a short distance to Pitcairn, Pennsylvania, a place that Al would call home for the next three decades. After graduating from Pitcairn High School in 1932, Al worked in the family business, Pearce & Son Funeral Home, and later lived in Rhode Island and Washington DC seeking work during the Great Depression. By 1940, he was back in Pitcairn where he started courting Louise Estelle Hulick and they began a long loving relationship. They were married on January 24, 1942. On June 1, 1942, Al reported for duty in the United States Army Air Corp (later to become the Air Force) and began his service to his country in World War II. The war would take him to Greenland, North Africa, South America, and for a longer stay in Burma, where he contracted malaria. His first child, a son was born on November 30, 1942 and they named his Alfred J. Pearce, Jr. After the war, Al enrolled at California State Teacher's College in California, Pennsylvania, and earned his bachelor's degrees in Industrial Arts and Geography in 1949. He accepted his first teaching position, teaching industrial arts, in Sykesville, Pennsylvania. In Sykesville, Al and Louise's second child, also a son, was born on May 27, 1950. They named him James Thomas Pearce. Their third and last child, a daughter named Jane Louise Pearce (Williams), was born on December 31, 1952 in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, where Al was teaching industrial arts. Since Jim had been suffering with asthma since birth, the family moved to California in 1956, where Al resumed his teaching career. He later worked for the San Bernardino County Planning Department for ten years. During his years in California, Al was a Sunday school teacher for many years at the First Presbyterian Church in San Bernardino and a cub and boy scout leader in the old Arrowhead Area Council. The family moved to Gastonia, North Carolina in 1968, where Al resumed his teaching career in industrial arts at Cherryville Middle School and later at Highland Middle School. He retired from teaching in 1979 and he and his wife, Louise, returned to California for Louise's health. Louise passed away on October 1, 1988. Al moved back to the south shortly there after. Due to declining health, Al lived with his son Jim and Jim's wife, Cyndy from late 2000 until his passing. Throughout his life, Al Pearce was a solid provider for his family and well respected in the communities he and Louise lived in. He was a 32nd degree Mason in the Lodge of Perfection, located in North Versailles, Pennsylvania. His life-long hobby was woodworking. He was also involved in coin collecting and tracing family genealogy in the later part of his life. Al Pearce, age 91, passed away on January 11, 2006, and is interred with his wife Louise in the Desert Lawn Cemetery, in Calimesa, California. Al Pearce is survived by his three children: Alfred Pearce, Jr., James Pearce (married to Cyndy) and Jane Williams (married to Kirk); five grandchildren, David Pearce, Sharon Pearce, Andrew Ledford, Tommy Pearce, and Marie Williams; and one great granddaughter, Loren Pearce. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: The Peachtree Christian Hospice, 3430 Duluth Park Lane, Duluth, Georgia 30096, 770-232-7727. Arrangements by Junior E. Flanigan of Flanigan Funeral Home and Crematory of Buford, GA, 770-932-1133, www.flaniganfuneralhome.com.