North, Alfred "Big Al"


Alfred North, “Big Al”, age 77 of Bluffton, SC, formerly of Warwick, RI, passed away on October 10th, 2023, at Caroline’s Cottage Hospice Center surrounded by his family.

Alfred was born in Providence, RI on July 17th, 1946, to parents Wilfred and Gertrude (Bills) North, and was a cherished brother to his only sibling, sister Elsie (North) Brady.  Alfred was a 1964 graduate of Johnston High School, and a 1980 graduate of Bryant College.

Alfred proudly served his country in the US Air Force during the Vietnam era, and the Rhode Island Air National Guard 143rd squadron from 1972-2006.  He is a combat veteran having served in Operation Enduring Freedom and retired at the rank of MSgt after 40 years and six months of service. 

He was married to the love of his life, Diane (Huebbers) North for 54 wonderful years and was a proud, loving father to Heidi (North) Matczak and Alfred North, Jr.

Alfred adored his family and loved to take road trips, eat a good breakfast, and enjoyed a number of adventures with them in their cherished life together.

Alfred adored his six grandchildren, Christopher North, Elizabeth Matczak and spouse Michael Bigalke, Grace Matczak, Emma North, Benjamin North and Mackenzie North, whom he referred to affectionately as 'his little critters'. He leaves countless treasured memories with them.  He also leaves behind his brothers-in-law Thomas Brady, Rod Huebbers, and Butch Huebbers, son-in-law Daniel Matczak, his daughter-in-law Danielle North, and many nieces and nephews.

Many people will recall Alfred from his 33 years at Almac’s stores in Rhode Island, he proudly displayed his numerous Almac’s memorabilia in his home for many years.

Alfred was extremely proud of his volunteer work with Samaritan’s Purse, God’s Goods, and was a multi-gallon blood donor. He also served in the RI military funeral honors program while in retirement.

A “model train” loving, motorcycle ridin’, popcorn grazing, square dancin’, karaoke crooning guy, Big Al inspired many close friends and family in his later years with his daily “Gator Report” texts which morphed into morning inspirational messages that will be missed by many. 

His final days were filled with stories, country music, his favorite karaoke standards and visits from many caring friends and neighbors.

Visitation will be held on Sunday, October 22nd at THE URQUHART-MURPHY FUNERAL HOME, 800 Greenwich Avenue, Warwick, RI, from 4:00PM to 7:00PM.  A Funeral Service will be held at Saint Barnabas Episcopal Church, 3257 Post Road, Warwick, RI, on Monday, October 23rd at 10:00 AM with Military Honors following at a special gathering at the East Greenwich Fireman’s Hall.  

A memorial service will be held in South Carolina at a later date. 

Donations in his memory can be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.

His family would like to thank the staff at Coastal Carolina Hospital and Caroline’s Cottage for their care and compassion.

Please, in Alfred’s memory, dance at the party, raise the roof, sing that karaoke song, and take care of your friends and neighbors as he did throughout his life and watch out for the gators.