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 Joseph Alzheimer of Kings Park: A 'father figure' always willing to help 

Kings Park resident Joseph Alzheimer died from the

Kings Park resident Joseph Alzheimer died from the coronavirus on April 9. Credit: Judy Spielvogel-Stepeck

Joseph Alzheimer loved going fast. Whether it was on a snowboard or in his black Mustang, the Kings Park resident savored a good ride.

So it made sense that on his wedding day, he wanted a picture of himself dressed to the nines in his tux while riding his motorcycle.

“He took off down the block and wiped out. He tore his leg open,” said Alzheimer's sister, Lillian Taylor. “But they somehow cleaned it up and did something to make him look presentable. My sister-in-law was none the wiser and he made it all through the reception and danced and then said, ‘we have to go to the emergency room.’ ”

Alzheimer, who died April 9 after a nearly two-week battle with the coronavirus, had a “huge personality” and a keen ability to make everyone he encountered laugh, Taylor said. Alzheimer was 45.

A lifelong resident of Kings Park, he was the second of three children born to George and Joanne Alzheimer. Taylor, of Commack, described Alzheimer as the glue that kept their family close.

“He always looked out for me. He’s been my best friend my whole life,” she said. “He was a wonderful son to my parents. If ever there was a problem, Joe would be there in a second. Just one phone call and he would be right there. Ever since he was a kid, he was like that.”

That support extended to Alzheimer's friends and community as well. When his friends were moving, he would show up unannounced to help with boxes. If someone was doing construction on their house, Alzheimer would appear, ready to work. If his sons’ friends had bike problems, he’d be the one to make the repairs. 

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“He would help anyone who was in need. He was there for anyone at any moment,” said Peter Marmorato Jr., 46, a friend of Alzheimer’s since high school. “He was a down-to-earth, sincere, caring guy.”

Alzheimer served as a father figure to his seven nieces and nephews, as well as his sons’ friends, showing them how to maintain their cars as well as encouraging them to achieve their goals.

Ben Sacks, 19, of Kings Park, coached one of Alzheimer’s son’s baseball teams. Despite the age difference, the two became fast friends, bonding over their love of cars and dirt bikes. He described Alzheimer as having a “good influence on everyone.”

“He was like a 15-year-old in a 45-year-old body. He was like one of the guys to me and my friends,” Sacks said. “He made everyone smile and laugh. He never had a frown on his face.”

After graduating from St. John the Baptist Diocesan High School in West Islip, Alzheimer worked for several years at Art Stone & Memorial, a Kings Park company that makes cemetery monuments. He then became a technician with Island Elevator in Bohemia. 

In addition to his parents and sister, Alzheimer is survived by his wife, Allison, and two sons, Derek, 16, and Nicholas, 15, as well as his brother, Raymond, and brother-in-law, Dave Taylor. Services will be held at a future date at Christ the King Church in Commack.

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