ALAN LLOYD KING (Big Al)
March 17, 1947 – January 10, 2022
Alan Lloyd King was born March 17, 1947 to Lloyd Sterling King and Della Frances Ryan in Exeter, California, a small community surrounded by citrus groves and orchards located at the base the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. One of his fondest memories was the unrivaled sweetness of tree ripened fruit gleaned after the initial harvest.
Church was always a part of his life. When he was nine, Al accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior at a church youth camp. He remained actively involved with a body of believers throughout his life, teaching, serving in leadership and volunteering wherever needed. Al was always singing, especially the old hymns and southern gospel music. He and his friends formed Southern Cross and shared their voices with small rural churches in Eastern Oregon.
Al was active in sports during his high school years, lettering in football and wrestling. After graduating in 1965 he played one year of football for College of the Sequoias before enlisting in the Marine Corps in 1966. During boot camp he broke his ankle and was unable to continue with his original company. They were deployed to Vietnam. He was not. Al proudly served his country from 1966 until his honorable discharge as a Gunnery Sergeant in 1977.
While stationed in Southern California, Al met and married Sharlene Hall. They had three children, Aaron, Becky and Ryan. When their marriage ended, he was a single dad for two years before a mutual friend suggested he and her friend, Sheri, needed to get acquainted. They talked on the phone for two weeks before she agreed to meet him for lunch. Towards the end of their lunch he asked “How do you like me so far?” Evidently, he was ok because they were married 10 months later in April, 1993. The two families blended and began a new chapter with Aaron King, Becky King Zoglman, Ryan King and Karle Greenfield Stoll.
One of Al’s biggest accomplishments was returning to college earning his Masters in Social Work at age 56. He became an LCSW which opened the door for years of adventure counseling kids on military bases in the US and Europe. Sheri joined him for 2 months in the Netherlands and 10 months in Germany. They traveled Europe building friendships, experiencing different cultures/languages and seeking out the best local cuisine. It was a wonderful time of adventures.
Al was an avid hunter and fisherman, with a passion for fly fishing. One Sunday before church, he was discovered casting his favorite fly (the royal coachman) into the grandkids wading pool stocked with crappie from the previous days outing to 203 Pond. He rarely missed an opportunity to improve his skills.
So much of his life was dedicated to mentoring and teaching kids. He was especially concerned that they understood who Jesus was and the importance of their relationship with Him. Al was a “kid magnet”. Toddlers adored him, high schoolers trusted him and grade school kids just wanted to hang out. He was affectionately known as Mr. Owl to those who couldn’t pronounce Al. It’s not surprising he participated in organizations whose focus was youth; Awanas, Young Life, Kiwanis, Sunday school teacher, Backpack Program which supplied at risk kids with food for the weekend and hanging out with middle schoolers during breakfast cooked by church volunteers.
Al’s laugh was bigger than life and well known throughout the community. Easily recognizable above the murmur of a crowd, all one had to do was listen for a moment and you could find him. His laughter will be missed as well as his big warm hugs and corny dad jokes.
He is survived by his wife, Sheri. Children: Aaron (Rilda) King, Becky (Jack) Zoglman, Ryan King and Karle (Jason) Stoll. Grandchildren: Ethan (fiancé Alyssa) Zoglman, Grace Zoglman, Andrew Zoglman, Ben Winans, Xander Winans, Jonathan Stoll, Nick Stoll, Drew Stoll. Sister: Anita Joyce Barlow. Nephew: Robert Barlow. Niece: Sarah Barlow.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Alan Lloyd King (Big Al), please visit our floral store.