Alfred James Desmond, 96, passed peacefully on Saturday, January 6, 2018 at Brookdale Assisted Living in Pt. Charlotte, FL. His wife of 73 years, Joyce Campbell Desmond, was present. Al was born on September 29, 1921 - the only child of Mary Alida Ingraham and Alfred Desmond of Springfield and East Longmeadow, MA. He married on January 13, 1945 and lived in East Longmeadow until 1980 when he and Joyce moved to Lake Wales, FL.
He is survived by his two daughters, Barbara Bennett of Cape Coral, FL, Donna Desmond Crafts (Tom) of North Port, FL and two grandchildren, Rebecca Lynn Bennett of Wauconda, IL; Matthew Desmond Bennett (Rachel) of Pasadena, CA and former son-in-law, Richard L Bennett of Lehigh, FL. He is also survived by a step granddaughter, Trisha Crafts of Orlando, FL.
Al graduated from Tech High School in 1940 and entered the Marines Corps with training at Hilton Head, SC serving active duty in the 11th Defense Artillery in the Pacific Theatre during World War II. In 2010, at age 89, Al was very privileged to enjoy an Honor Flight trip to DC to visit the various war memorials. Al was the first police officer in East Longmeadow and retired in 1977 as a detective after serving 30 years on the police force. He loved dancing to the Big Band era music, fishing, sports and enjoyed coaching ELRA youth hockey and baseball. He was also very involved in the East Longmeadow Lion's Club including a term as president. He was the attendance officer for the public schools in East Longmeadow. Al will be missed by family and friends for his positive and fun-loving attitude and dedication to family. He was always eager to help others and made friends wherever he went with his outgoing personality.
A gathering of family and friends will be held at Kays-Ponger & Uselton Funeral Home in Punta Gorda, FL on Saturday, January 27th, 2018 from 10:30am to 11am with a memorial service to follow at 11am.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in his memory may be made to the Tidewell Hospice in Pt. Charlotte, FL or to any personally favorite charity.
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Mr. Desmond was such a kind soul. My Das was in the USMC in WWII and he would always salute me as he left the doctor's office and I would say Semper Fi. Mr. & Mrs. Desmond were such a beautiful married couple ... my heartfelt sympathy to Mrs. Desmond and family. Well done Mr. Desmond. Well done. Sunny @ the doctor's office.
Al and I will always remember the good times at Elmcrest and Lake Wales CC. Sorry for your loss. Al and Faith Gelinas
Dear Mrs, Desmond,
I was saddened to read of Al's passing in the Sunday Republican. He certainly lived a long and fruitful life. Back in the day when I was covering police news for Radio Station WSPR and later WHYN-TV-40, I knew almost every officer on the East Longmeadow police force by his first name. Al was one of my favorites. When there was a news story, he was always up front with the details. When there was no story, he was still fun to talk with. Though it was a long time ago, I consider it a privilege to have known him.
Sincerely, Durham Caldwell, Springfield, Mass.
All was great friend to my parents, ted and Erma kellogg. I have fond memories of what a nice guy he was.
Dear Joyce and Family;
We are very sorry to hear of your loss. Al was such a steady, guiding hand in East Longmeadow. I remember him well. Although I joined the Lions Club after you and he left town, my Dad served with him in the Lions Club for many years. As school kids, nobody messed with Al when he came looking for us!! You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Secretary, East Longmeadow Lions Club
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