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Gerald E. Alger

October 6, 2010 by

Gerald E. Alger, 81, died Sunday, Oct. 17, 2010 in Santa Maria, Calif.
He was born on Jan. 8, 1930 in Lakeview to Merl H. and Janice Robertson Alger.
He was raised in Lakeview and educated here until his sophomore year of high school when he attended Hill Military Academy in Portland.  He then completed his last two years of high school at New Mexico Military Institute, graduating in 1948.
He attended Oregon State College and then entered into the family movie theater business in Lakeview in 1950, where he worked until he went into the Army Signal Corps in 1952.  He trained at Camp San Luis Obispo and later went overseas where he completed his active duty with the 547 Signal Depot Company in Salzburg, Austria, returning home in 1954.  He was in the Army Reserves until 1960 at which time he was Honorably Discharged from the Army.
In 1956, he married Reba Jean Smallwood in Gold Beach, and in 1957, he left the theaters to return to college.  He enrolled at Indiana Institute of Technology in Fort Wayne, Ind. where he graduated in 1960 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electronic Engineering.
He worked for General Electric for 12 years, during which he was actively involved in Polaris Missile Program in Pittsfield, Mass. and Sunnyvale, Calif.  In 1963, while still at GE, he moved his family to Pasadena, Texas where he worked on the Apollo Spacecraft Program at the Manned Spacecraft Center, now called the Lyndon B. Johnson Manned Spacecraft Center, for the next nine years.
In 1972, he left GE and went to work for the U.S. Government at the Naval Weapons Center (NAVWPNCEN) in Ridgecrest, Calif. and was involved in the Reliability and Quality Assurance activities associated with a variety of naval weapons programs.  He completed his career at NAVWPNCEN as the Production Manger of the Rolling Airframe Missile Program and retired in 1995.
In 2000, Gerald and Reba moved to Santa Maria, Calif. where they were in residence at the time of his death.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brother Bob; sister Jeanne; nephew David.
He is survived by his wife Reba; his son and daughter-in-law Christopher and Kathan Alger; daughters Roxanne Alger, Daniel and Ruth Ellen Sutehall; grandchildren Michele, Theresa, Christine, Evan, Max and Blythe; one nephew; five cousins.
A memorial service was held at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church on Saturday, Nov. 20, 2010.  His ashes will be scattered in the Pacific Ocean at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 402 South Lincoln, Santa Maria, Calif. 93454, or Santa Maria Valley Humane Society, 751 S. Black Rd., Santa Maria, Calif. 93458.

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