Al Cerepa of Gold Beach, Ore., died at home on Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2001, after being diagnosed with leukemia on Thursday, Jan. 25, 2001. He was 63.
A memorial service will be held Saturday in Gold Beach. The audio portion will be transmitted live to the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses in Kenai, at 1 p.m.
He was born May 31, 1937, in Chicago, to Alexander P. Cerepa Sr. and Monica Zelinski Cerepa, both of whom emigrated from Poland. He was the youngest of 10 children.
His family moved to Redding, Calif., in 1947. He attended Union Elementary School and graduated from Shasta Union High School in 1955. He attended seminary in Menomane, Mich. He continued his education after raising his family and earned a bachelor's degree in 1994, just before he retired.
He married Faye Grammer on July 17, 1964. He was baptized as a Jehovah's Witness in 1965. In 1969, he moved with his wife and two daughters from the San Francisco Bay area to Kenai. He worked for Tesoro Refinery in Nikiski from 1970 to 1977 and for Atlantic Ritchfield Company in Prudhoe Bay from February 1977 to January 1995. He and his wife owned Peninsula Nutrition Center in Kenai from January 1991 to January 1997. They moved to Gold Beach, Ore., in November 1997 to enjoy their retirement.
"He loved reading and listening to classical music. He enjoyed building model cars, planes and trains. He liked to fly kites, ride bikes, and comb the beach for agates with his wife. During his 28 years on the Kenai Peninsula he enjoyed hunting, fishing and gold panning. He always believed there was nothing more important than family," the family said.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Alexander Sr. and Monica Cerepa, and his siblings, Stella, Phil and Richard.
He is survived by his wife of 36 years, Faye; daughter and son-in-law Shannon and Ray Merritt, of Soldotna; daughter and son-in-law Becky and Jeff Patsey and grandchildren Nicole and Connor, of Fair Oaks, Calif.; siblings May, Violet, Winnifred, John, Jerry and Annie and countless nieces, nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews.
Cremation arrangements were made by Port Orford Funeral Services, Port Orford, Ore. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Curry County Hospice, P.O. Box 746, Gold Beach, Ore., 97444.
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