Alper, Dr. Richard Elliott Yitchak, Ph.D. MD, A.O.A. August 4, 2011- Dr. "Dick" has "gone off duty." Dick's beloved wife Gretchen, son James Pontius, daughter Jessica (Corey) Hoffmann, sister Peggy Goldstein, niece Missy Goldstein, nephew Randy Goldstein, mother-in-law, Marion Ferguson; brother & sister-in-law Fred & Kristy Sauby and their families, dear friends Robert & Marilyn Nienkerk, Arlys Danielson, Melanie Mathews, Carole Dahmen, Joan Jensen, and dog Tony, share various memories of his easy-going temperament and his enthusiastic appreciation for humanity. Family who preceded him into eternity: mother Nina Alper, father Dr. Irwin Alper and stepmother Evelyn Alper. Born December 12, 1933 in New York, NY, Dr. Alper graduated as Valedictorian at the Forman School in Litchfield, CT. He earned a B.S. in Zoology at the University of Maine, ME, a M.S. in Microbiology at Syracuse University, NY with a post Doctoral Fellowship at the National Institute of Health. After graduation, he devoted his time at the Argonne National Labs with Research in Electron Microscopy. He also taught Microbiology at the Medical School University of Geneva, Switzerland. Dr. Alper spoke technical French. After Switzerland, Dr. Alper explored an internal medicine scholarship and clinical study at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, with Alpha Omega Alpha recognition from the National Honor Medical Society. Dr. Alper worked as a Pediatrician at Minneapolis Children's in its early years, working in the NICU and ER, and later at the Teen Medical Clinic, Abbott Northwestern Hospital, Golden Valley Health Center, Fairview Deaconess, Fairview Riverside Hospital, St. Mary's Hospital and the Hearing Impaired Program of St. Mary's Hospital. He later worked as a staff physician at the Anoka Metro Regional Treatment Center, retiring in 1998. Following his first retirement, he worked for the next twelve years as Medical Director of Anoka County Corrections, Anoka, MN. Dick retired on December 31, 2010 when he was 77 years old. Dick encouraged people in his care. With an affirming silence he welcomed stories of fortune and folly. With his humble eyes and curious humor, he gathered pertinent information. On occasion, he shared his thoughts. When he spoke, he found optimistic words that maximized options. Dick accepted each person's description and gently urged peaceful actions for improvement. Dick enjoyed family gatherings and holiday parties. To plan family celebrations, he visited the grocery store (multiple trips) to ensure that his table guests would have enough to eat. Dick favored crossword puzzles, crime mystery novels, feeding the birds, and swimming at the lake. Dick also preferred day-to-day events, such as sitting on the porch, reading the paper and A.M. radio news reports. Memorial Mass 12 Noon Wednesday, August 10, 2011, Church of St. Stephen, 525 Jackson Street, Anoka, MN with visitation one hour prior to Mass. Arrangements entrusted to Gearhart Funeral Home, Anoka Chapel (763) 421-4347.