Al died May 7, 1997, in Winston-Salem, where he had lived all his life--a life he devoted to making his hometown a better place. In our 50th book he wrote, "I have been blessed with good fortune all my life, for which I am grateful. I have tried to balance this by serving others, but I still have received more than I can possibly give back." And he pursued that goal every day, right up to the moment in May when he was swiftly taken away as the result of a massive stroke.
To call Al a civic leader of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County is an understatement. It is literally impossible to list all the local civic and charitable organizations he served, encompassing health care, education, the arts, the special needs of children, and help for those who could not help themselves. All of this in addition to his business career as president of Arista Mills, a firm he joined in 1946 upon retiring from WWII Army service.
Al's wife, Betty Bahnson, died in 1996. They are survived by their daughter Dianne Lawson, their sons David and Chris, and five grandchildren. With them we hold happy memories of the life Al shared with family, friends, and countless beneficiaries of his generous spirit.
The Class of 1939