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Alfred A. Gossan of Escanaba, age 95, passed away Thursday evening, September 8, 2022, at home of natural causes with his loving wife, Marla, by his side. Alfred was born on July 6, 1927 in Chicago, Illinois to Elias and Selme Gossan. He graduated from Gage Park High School in Chicago at 16, where he enjoyed participating in Student Council and was named the “Class Jitterbug.” He went on to spend a year at Wilson Community College before joining the U.S. Navy in 1945. During his time in the U.S. Navy, he worked in the eye clinic at Chelsea Naval Hospital where he was inspired to begin a career in Optometry. After Alfred was honorably discharged in 1947, he attended Northern Illinois College of Optometry and earned his Doctor of Optometry in 1949. He opened his practice in 1950 in Escanaba on Ludington Street, later opening The Vision Clinic in Escanaba in 1962. Alfred met the former Marla Flannery in 1975. Marla began working alongside Alfred at the clinic in 1976 where she would later add her own touch with Marla’s Eyewear Boutique. In 1978, Alfred married Marla and together they shared 44 wonderful years of marriage. Their partnership at the clinic continued until 2000 when they retired.
Alfred was grateful to Escanaba for supporting him at The Vision Clinic for many years and enjoyed being involved in the community. He was a member of various civic organizations and was a founding member of the Delta County Cancer Alliance. He was a member of Bethany Lutheran Church, where he was proud to sing in the choir. Alfred loved sports including tennis and golf and was a member of the Escanaba Country Club where he had two holes-in-one. Hunting season was his favorite time of year. He was a member of the BO camp and introduced his step-son, Kip, nephew, Victor, and great-nephew, Teddy, to the sport. Alfred and Marla enjoyed traveling, entertaining, and playing card games like Bridge with friends. Alfred had a zest for life and truly loved his home of Escanaba.
Alfred is survived by his wife, Marla; his step-son, Kip (Kimberly) of Austin, TX; and his step-daughter, Kimberly (Wade) of Texarkana, TX; his granddaughters, Alexandra (Taylor) and Hillary (Austin); and great-grandchildren, Fowler Grace and William Bourne. Also surviving Alfred are sons, Al Junior and Jeff; and daughter, Marleigh, their families; along with several nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, Alfred was preceded in death by his sisters, Frieda and Cyrena; brothers, Eddy and Albert; and son, Brian.
Visitation will be held from 2:00 p.m. to 3:45 p.m., Thursday, September 15, 2022 at the Anderson Funeral Home in Escanaba. Military Honors will be conducted at 3:45 p.m., Thursday, in the Anderson Funeral Home Chapel with funeral services to follow with Pastor Mike Markwell officiating. A reception will be held immediately following the services in Anderson Funeral Home reception room. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Delta County Cancer Alliance or Bethany Lutheran Church to honor the life of Alfred. The Anderson Funeral Homes are assisting the Gossan family and online remembrances can be shared at www.andersonfuneralhomes.net.
Delta County Cancer Alliance
3430 Ludington Street, Escanaba MI 49829
Bethany Lutheran Church
202 South 11th Street, Escanaba MI 49829