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Richard Whitney "Dick" Alexander

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Richard Whitney "Dick" Alexander Obituary
Alexander, Richard "Dick" Whitney LA MESA -- Richard "Dick" Whitney Alexander passed at the age of 75 on Tuesday, April 9th, 2013. Dick attended Helix High, spent over 3 years in the U.S. Navy, and graduated from San Diego State in 1964. He received his Doctor of Medicine from the University of Cincinnati in 1969. After completing internships and residency in the LA area, Dick moved to Alpine, California with his family in 1974. He practiced as an ENT Physician and Surgeon at Kaiser Permanente on Zion Avenue in Mission Gorge until his retirement in 1998. Dick married Diane Elaine Alexander in August of 1966 in La Mesa and together they had three children -- Bonnie, Thomas, and Kellie. Dick enjoyed riding horses, sailing, reading, camping, hiking, and being outdoors. Dick was very quiet, had a subtle sense of humor and an unflappable calm. He cherished his private time with his family, spending his free time on trips skiing throughout California and camping at Horse Camp in the Cuyamacas. Dick was also affectionately known as "Doc" at Diane's School of Dance, where he contributed his creative talents as a set and prop designer. Some of his crowning achievements in this area were a 50-foot ship that would sink and rise again, a 200 pound UFO that unleashed 30 three year olds onto the stage, and a two-person "Puff the Magic Dragon" costume that would blow smoke from a fire extinguisher out his nose. Dick enjoyed helping others. As a physician he would always want to spend more time with his patients to better understand them and their ailments. He attained a reputation as the "go-to" doctor in the early stages of the AIDS epidemic as someone who would treat infected patients with dignity. In his church, he was active with "All God's Children," which advocates for greater acceptance for the LGBT community within the Methodist Church. He also trained with the San Diego County Sheriff Search and Rescue Academy in 2006. In his retirement, Dick enjoyed volunteering on the trails in Cuyamaca State Park, being particularly proud of his certification as a bulldozer operator. He would go on weekly hikes throughout San Diego County with his fellow retired doctors. He enjoyed time spent restoring his vintage MG auto. Dick died a peaceful death at home with family present after a short but courageous fight with cancer. Dick is survived by his wife, his 3 children, 3 sons-in-law, 4 grandchildren, his Corgi "Cher" and 4 "granddogs." Donations can be made in his memory by sending a check made out to CRSPIA (Cuyamaca Rancho State Park Interpretive Assoc.) clearly marked with Dick Alexander's name and sent to "The Dick Alexander Trails Fund," P.O. Box 204, Descanso, CA 91916.

Published in U-T San Diego on Apr. 21, 2013
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