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Al Pettit's Passing - May 31, 2012

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David

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To all friends and forum family, Robert 'Al' Pettit, after a period of illness this past week, passed away this morning May 31st, 2012 at 2:50AM.

Al is survived by his wife Lee, daughter Tara, son Chris, and three beautiful grand kids. Al loved his family, his beautiful home in Orangeville and his friends, and pets, very much.

Al also loved his online community, the great people he was able to be friends with, and those that he was able to help guide through the troubled and cloudy waters that is this horrific disease.

Al was diagnosed as early as 2003 with ALS. Since then, Al fought tirelessly to support the ALS community, helping raise an extraordinary amount of money through the Walk for ALS for support and research, and dedicated tens of thousands of hours to supporting others through their personal battles with this disease here at the forum.

Myself, like you, is in a bit of shock and very saddened upon hearing the news of Al's passing. Not only will this website miss Al, but we will all certainly miss Al's presence, charm, wit, off-the-wall sense of humour and relentless commitment to helping others.

For those of you that are not aware, Al first joined the ALS Forums May 24, 2004.

Al's last post was May 25, 2012 (six days ago).

Between May 2004 and May 2012, during those 8 years, there was rarely a day go by that Al didn't spend time answering questions, helping new members, conversing with old members, and spending hours a day overseeing the website, forum and community in general.

Al first contacted me in 2006 when this forum was being shutdown by the ALS Society of Canada due to legal reasons. Al insisted that the forum must remain online and continue to help people. Al explained to me that the forum was helping him meet others when he was no longer able to drive and easily leave the house. Al felt, and rightfully so, that the forum, and himself, could continue to help people, and that if it was put offline, people would not be able to find a similar safe place to meet, communicate and share experiences.

Al and I worked together to move the forum, members and posts, and to ensure it remained online for the 400-500 members that the forum had at that time.

Due to Al's hard work and perseverance, this website has remained online for six long, dutiful and caring years while amassing over 10,000 members and 100,000 of helpful posts. This forum, while titled "ALS Forums", surely can be referred to as "AL's Forum".

Al's family and friends were most important to him, but following that, all of you, this website and this support community were always on the forefront of his mind, always being looked after, and always cared for.

The world, and especially the ALS community, is a much sadder place today. Today, a hole was created as it lost one of the bravest soldiers and most dedicated individuals it's ever had.

All the best Al, thank you, and we wish you all the best on your new adventures.

 
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Judith Ann

Distinguished member
Joined
Jan 22, 2012
Messages
134
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PALS
Diagnosis
11/2011
Country
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AR
RIP Al! Prayers for your family.

Judy
 

momap53

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Joined
Jul 2, 2011
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1,640
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US
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What a blow for our online community. We will all miss his wit and wisdom.
Sending out prayers for Al's family.
 

pmbenb83

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Joined
Aug 6, 2007
Messages
399
Diagnosis
03/2008
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My heart is breaking for Al's family and our forum family. He has been such a huge inspiration to me and my husband. We are all much better people for having met Al on the forum.

Sending prayers to his wonderful wife Lee and his wonderful family for peace and comfort. {{{HUGS}}}
 

panguinjen

Senior member
Joined
Mar 27, 2012
Messages
523
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Lost a loved one
Country
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State
CA
RIP Al, you will be missed by many.
 

geayt

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Joined
May 16, 2005
Messages
2
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Country
CA
State
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I met Al on the forum in 2004, I experienced great comfort from his knowledge and experience with ALS. We were blessed to become friends with Al, Lee and their family and have enjoyed his humour and friendship for all these years. He will be sadly missed as our thoughts and prayers are with his entire family.
Kim & Geayt
 

laurel

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Country
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I can't believe this news. We have lost a truly fine man. God Bless you Al. You have done so much for so many. I am so sorry Lee and family. We are going to be lost without you Al.
Laurel
 

glupavomomiche

Distinguished member
Joined
Sep 25, 2011
Messages
272
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PALS
Diagnosis
09/2011
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US
State
Texas
I feel sadness and some degree of grief every time we lose another PALS, but today, I cried... for Al, his family, and for us. Al was an incredible person and I sure will miss him.
 
Joined
May 22, 2012
Messages
18
Country
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I just read about Al's passing. May his soul rest in peace. I have been off the forum for over a year for numerous reasons, all the time I was gone Al was on my mind, just wondering. I finally was able to log back in, and dear Al was the first one to welcome me back on May 28, 2012. Bless his family. I was about to reply when I read a post from a concerned commentator, and was waiting for Al's comeback to reply. I was able to log back in just in time for my friend to welcome me back. Rest in peace Al. You were so much help to me with your kind words. Give my son Rudy a big hug for me! Wait Al, there are no fires for you to fight in Heaven! What a great man he was!

Irma
 

mrsmack2002

New member
Joined
Apr 1, 2006
Messages
2
Reason
PALS
Diagnosis
12/1996
Country
CA
State
Ontario
Al was a great friend to me and I will miss his so much...Al I will come into the fourms more and try to help like you did...We can help each other through this horrable disease...God bless you Al and be at peace...I will miss you...much love Pam
 

Willow

Distinguished member
Joined
Dec 28, 2006
Messages
102
Reason
DX MND
Diagnosis
04/2012
Country
CA
State
East Coast
I am so saddened to hear this news, he was such an incredibly caring man. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and this forum. RIP Al , you will always be missed and fondly remembered.
Willow
 

st123

Distinguished member
Joined
Feb 2, 2012
Messages
298
Reason
Lost a loved one
Country
US
State
Michigan
So shocked and saddened by this news. Peace, love, and prayers to Al and his loved ones. Al was surely a wonderful man.
 

sadiemae

Very helpful member
Joined
Sep 20, 2009
Messages
2,397
Reason
Lost a loved one
Diagnosis
09/2009
Country
US
State
NV
Godspeed my good friend. Gonna miss you buddy!
 

michelleRN

Member
Joined
Jul 30, 2011
Messages
23
Reason
PALS
Diagnosis
10/2008
Country
US
State
VA
Unfortunately, all of us here affected in some way by ALS know to expect death, and naturally it is something we are still never prepared for. Somehow, in this situation, that couldn't be more of an understatement. I sit at work right now trying to fight back tears. Sending prayers to all of Al's loved ones. The world has lost a good man.
 
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