Al Spicer

Bessemer, NC | In Memoriam

Artist Statement: Creating objects out of wood is a passion that began, for me, at an early age. At 13 years I completed a soap box racer, which was my first large project. I continued working with wood as a hobby for the next 36 years as I pursued my career in the visual arts. Early retirement provided me with the opportunity to seek formal training specifically in making classical furniture pieces whose design and function have stood the test of time. A desire to use my visual arts background in building quality furniture led me to the Fine and Creative Woodworking program at Rockingham Community College in Wentworth, NC. There I was provided the perfect place to further hone my skills. Today I build full time specializing in 17th and 18th century reproduction pieces for clients that are destined to be cherished heirlooms handed down through the generations. I do build contemporary pieces to client specifications. In all pieces I use the finest woods, veneers, and finishes in construction and work to honor craftsmen of today and from an earlier age.

Obituary: William Alton Spicer. Aug. 14, 1950 – March 31, 2019. William Alton Spicer, 68, passed away peacefully at his home in the Snow Hill Community of Danbury, NC on March 31, 2019 with his wife of 47 years, Cindy (C.J.) and sister-in-law, Deb, at his bedside. Cancer took his life after a twelve-year battle and yet, in Christ Al was victorious over death and is now enjoying eternal life, whole and healthy in the company of a great cloud of witnesses, who went before him paving the way toward Christ. Al’s creativity and Spirit-driven internal motivation aided his 32-year career in the newspaper business, first as a part-time photographer at the Petersburg (VA) Progress Index and on to the Fort Myers (FL) News-Press, where he was nominated for a Pulitzer, and finally as graphics editor, and imaging coordinator at the Greensboro (NC) News & Record, from which he retired. Upon retirement in 2007, Al enrolled at Rockingham Community College to hone his furniture design and building skills. He loved furniture built by the old masters in England and in the fledgling United States and considered them his mentors.

Al was loved for his no-nonsense truth telling and not-so-much by others for the same matter of fact opinions he only offered when asked. He always told the truth even if it wasn’t what you wanted to hear. He valued time, not wasting a moment of each day, and more so upon receiving a diagnosis of terminal cancer. Learning he had months or maybe a year to live, he gave the cancer prognosis over to God and enrolled in college. He lived his life without giving cancer a moment of his precious time. It’s now twelve years later and in God’s perfect time, Al has been called home. He was looking forward to the bright light at the end of the corridor where he knew Christ was waiting along with loved ones he missed so much. A connoisseur of oatmeal cookies and “any kind of berry” muffins, Al spent his last few months converting and perfecting the gluten free recipes for those sweets so his best friend and soulmate, Cindy, could share in his delights.

He was preceded in death by his parents Lillian and William Spicer, and both sets of grandparents. Al leaves behind his wife, Cindy (C.J.) with lots of photographs, hand crafted furniture, and a sense of peace that comes only from knowing Christ. Others who will mourn his passing are his sister, Catherine Spicer Berner (Mike); brother, Christopher Lee Spicer (Beth); sisters- and brothers-in-law: Deborah J. Crumpler, Gerald Thomas Johnson (Joan), Gary Wayne Johnson (Kim), and Rhonda J. Antkowiak (Dennis), nieces and nephews, along with dozens of woodworking, rose growing, and dog showing friends all over the U.S.

Exhibiting Member 2011-2019