Toronto Optimists, Canadian Commanders, Optimists Alumni
Al began his time in the Optimist carrying a flag before moving to rifle. At that time our rifles were chrome-plated Lee-Enfield .303s! Later a chrome plated bayonet was added. Boy, were they heavy! After aging out, Al joined the Canadian Commanders, again carrying a rifle. When he joined the Optimists Alumni he decided that he wanted to be musical and joined our cymbal line. And a fine job he did!
Here are a few comments from some of those who knew him:
"I remember him picking me up for Optimists rehearsals in the early 60's; he was a dependable and enthusiastic corps member. Ole, as he was known amongst friends, was funny and had a great sense of humour. There was a very serious side to Al that a lot of people did not see, life was not always easy. He was intelligent and had a variety of interest that went under the radar. The last time we spoke he told me about his cabin and how much he enjoyed being with nature. It was always good to see Al and listen to the stories and the humour he could inject into some very trying (for him) experiences. Al was extremely well liked by his peers in the drum corps world and will be missed by many. He marches on to be greeted by those who have gone before him. Peace be with you my friend. "
"Al had a great sense of humour. He had so many stories he could tell you about different people he met in his Corps years. He was a funny guy and a good story teller. He did a great job while on rifle in the 60's as well as being a great cymbal player in the Optimists Alumni."
"I will miss Uncle Alex's huge heart and wonderful sense of humor. He lit up any room he entered. God bless you Uncle Alex."
"the two traits my brother struggled with were his sensitivity and his compassion. These were the two traits I respected the most in my brother."
"the world has lost a good man... a good father .... and a good sibling.... you asked me what your purpose in life was this last year... and you finally figured it out... giving your love and stories to the nurses in Peterborough.. before that you accomplished so much... you had your land and made sure you didn't lose that... it was your life... listening to the birds and watching the big moose pass your kitchen window... miss you brother and I thank you for all you gave me .. so much love and wisdom...you also learned to except love from me.. or anyone for that matter... you thought it mothering and babying... yes, perhaps the rubbing of the feet was much, but you loved it... ha ha - Catherin (Miller) Hufnagel".