Alan R. Tower, Amherst Fire Department Captain (Ret.), peacefully departed this life on Thursday, July 24, 2014 after a long illness. He will be deeply missed by his loving wife of 27 years, Donna (Reed) Tower.
The Guest Book is expired.
Born in South Hadley, Alan was an outstanding athlete throughout his life and particularly in his high school years. He graduated South Hadley schools and attended Springfield College. He left Springfield College to serve his country by joining the U.S. Army. He saw combat in Korea and Vietnam. Alan served in the Army and was honorably discharged and returned home and became a member of the Amherst Fire Department. He was instrumental in instituting the beginning of the ambulance service that Amherst has today.
Alan was promoted to captain and retired after 32 years. Al and his wife, Donna, enjoyed many years on their pontoon boat on the Connecticut River, and loved to white water raft on the Deerfield River. The winter months were spent skiing with family and friends throughout the northeast. Al missed serving the public though, and during his retirement, turned to Amherst College where he was employed as a dispatcher for their Police Department for a number of years. He was held in high regard by his brothers in both fire and police.
Alan was a remarkable man in so many ways not the least was his musical talents which he came by naturally. He was an exceptional guitar player. He not only had an opportunity to play a little backup for Bo Diddly, but spent 14 years with the Diamond Collection, the Neal Diamond tribute band which is so popular along the East Coast. Because of his diverse talents, he was highly thought of by a great many professional musicians in the greater area. Alan brought great pleasure to many with his beautiful singing voice and guitar work. Al was a great friend to so many with his calm and steady manner. We were all so lucky to have had him in our lives.
He leaves so many wonderful friends with such great memories and he loved them all. He leaves his sons Daniel (Susan) McKeon of South Hadley and Hartford Fire Lt. Douglas (Sherry) McKeon of East Longmeadow to remember all of the good times spent together as a family. He also leaves his brother, Lawrence (Jeanne) Tower of South Hadley. His grandchildren were the lights of his life and they are Alyssa Best, Cassandra McKeon, Hannah McKeon, Dylan McKeon and Josh Boutot. He also leaves his nephew Robert Tower (Diane) of Monson and was previously deceased by his nephew Richard Tower.
There will be many memories of Al at the Celebration of His Life on Aug. 6 from 4 to 7 p.m. in Amherst. It will be at the Alumni House on the Amherst College Campus. Please call 413- 542-2000 for directions to this location. New England Funeral & Cremation Center, LLC 25 Mill St., Springfield, MA has been entrusted with the arrangements. Visit www.nefcc.net
To Sign a Guest Book, express condolences, share memories and read other obituaries, go to www.gazettenet.com/obituaries.
New England Funeral & Cremation Center, LLC
25 Mill Street Springfield, MA 01108
Published in Daily Hampshire Gazette on July 28, 2014