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In Memory of
1924 - 2018
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The lighting of a Memorial Candle not only provides a gesture of sympathy and support to the immediate family during their time of need but also provides the gift of extending the Book of Memories for future generations.
During World War I, while stationed in Hollyhead, Wales, Alan’s father, John Gerald Leitch, a dashing young US Naval Officer, met a pretty young Welsh lassie, Marie Catherine. They fell in love and married in 1921. John brought Marie back to the US where they settled in Baltimore, Maryland. The couple soon had 2 boys, Jack and then Alan.
This is Alan’s story.
Sadly, the marriage didn’t last, so Marie moved to San Diego to be closer to her sister, Lillian, and raised the boys there. She bought a house very close to her sister, just a stone’s throw away from Mt. Hope Cemetery. This became a favorite playground for young Alan and his friends, who gave him the nickname, Butch. As they grow up, they formed a gang they called ‘The Cemetery Wolves”. Alan maintained friendships with them all his life; in later years they would get together to play cards.
In 1943, seventeen-year-old Alan joined the Army and helped fight World War II. For the next few years he supported the 38th infantry division in the Philippines as a gunner in the tank called “Dimples”. When the war ended, Alan came home all grown up, young and handsome, with a curl on his forehead and big dreams in his heart. He marries briefly and has a daughter, Nan (formerly Nancy).
Soon after he started working in a machine shop and enrolled in adult night school, taking a Spanish class. That’s where he met the love of his life, young Carmela Cascio. Their courtship started one night when Alan asked: “Would you like to go out for a coffee?” She agreed and that resulted in a marriage that lasted 68 years.
They were newly married, when Alan became a member of the Scottish Clan Cameron. With the heart of a Scotsman and a love of music, he joined the Bagpipe Band, starting as a drummer and then a piper. They had two children, Enid and Bradford. The Scottish culture and community became a big part of their lives growing up.
Alan completed his education at SDSU becoming an Industrial Engineer and worked most of his working career at North Island Naval Station.
Alan led an active life and enjoyed playing basketball and golf. One of his life-long loves was dancing. He and Carmela spent many years dancing together; Scottish Country Dancing, Round Dancing, Ballroom Dancing, even becoming an instructor. Their dancing took them many places and he loved to travel. Another hobby he enjoyed was doing the crossword puzzle printed in the daily newspaper. Often, after a breakfast at Denny’s, he would need some change to buy the paper. He had a sweet-tooth but never gained a weight. In later years, his favorite things to eat were pancakes with lots of whipped cream and he absolutely loved ice cream.
He was a man of principle, generous, caring and loyal; always there to support and encourage his family. He was intelligent and quick-witted, always giving sage advice. He will be dearly missed by his family. He leaves behind his devoted wife, Carmela and his grateful children: Nan, Enid and Bradford. He is survived by his grandchildren: Julie, Jeff (deceased), John, Jarrett and Matthew, and his great grandchildren: Kali, Matyah, Iree, Tide,Taj, Jonathan, Sterling, Madison, Ethan and Aidan.
“…He will call, the dead will answer, they shall live at his command. For he will have a longing for the work of his own hand. So have faith, and do not wonder, for our God can make us stand. And we will live forever, as the work of his own hand.”
(Kingdom Song #151 – based on Job 15:14)
This Book of Memories brings those affected by loss together by encouraging communication and self-expression. By giving friends and family a special place to tell their stories and express their feelings of loss, it helps them care for one another during a very difficult time. Click on any of the links to the right to access features or information within this memorial website.
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