Alan P. Oines, Opportunity Village, Clear Lake, died Monday, Jan. 23, 2012 at Mercy Medical Center of North Iowa, Mason City, Iowa. A memorial service was held Thursday, Jan. 26 at Galilean Lutheran Church, Clear Lake, with Pastor Scot McCluskey officiating. A family inurnment will take place at a later date at High Cliff Park
Cemetery, Galesville, Wis. Memorials may be given to Opportunity Village or Galilean Lutheran Church, Clear Lake, in his name.
Alan was born in 1948 and lived his first year at Michigan State University thanks to the GI Bill and parents eager to learn horticulture. The family then moved to a fruit farm near Keeler, Mich. where Al was joined by his first dog, “General,” and soon by his little brother, Joel. Alan pushed Joel up and down the farm lanes in his stroller, fed him strawberries and peaches, and invented words for him to learn on family car trips.
His parents moved to Hammond, Ind. where Al started school and was soon joined by his sister, Peggy. At age 10 Alan moved with his family to Niles, Mich. where, along with his whole family, joined the choirs of First Presbyterian Church and acquired his love of music and eagerness to be a full participant in the life of the church. He struggled gamely through the fifth grade and then enrolled in the new special education programs in the Niles Public Schools, excelling as a hurdler and a sprinter in the junior high track program, and learning, along with his teachers, the essentials of getting through life.
The family bought a farm south of Berrien Springs, Mich. and Al, now 18, tried out the life of a farmer’s son and hired man. He and his siblings hauled rocks, planted, picked and irrigated strawberries, shoveled tons of horse manure, filled water tanks, built fence, and played roughneck hockey on the pond in winter. When a good career opportunity came up for his father, Alf, the family moved to Clear Lake, where unknown to them, a local pastor and many interested volunteers were planning a unique intentional community for differently abled adults that would be integrated into the daily life of Clear Lake. Alan and his whole family volunteered whenever they could to help make Opportunity Village a reality. Alan was delighted to move in as a pioneer resident, and call it home for the rest of his life. With the encouragement and assistance of the people at Opportunity Village, Alan lived in a group home, in his own apartment, worked in the town, joined the Lutheran church, was a Special Olympics athlete, and an irrepressible traveler.
Alan is survived by his mother, Joanne L. Oines, Clear Lake; one brother, Joel Oines and his wife, Gretchen, Wauzeka, Wis., and their sons, Micah and Sam; brother-in-law, Robert Hammerslag, Panay Island, the Phillippines, and his two children, Jacob and Emerson; aunt, Katsy Hart Murphy, San Antonio, Texas and her two sons, Hart and Scott; and his extended family of friends at Opportunity Village.
Alan was preceded in death by his father, Alf Oines and sister, Peggy Hammerslag.
Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, Clear Lake, was in charge of arrangements.