We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Davis-Watkins - Fort Walton Beach
Alfred (Al) Sharp Cresse, Jr., 92, of Destin, Florida, peacefully succumbed to his long battle with Alzheimer’s disease and heart problems on Monday May 23, 2022. He is with his Lord and Savior and once again with is beloved wife, Lil.
Al was born March 8, 1930 in Cape May, New Jersey to Alfred and Beatrice Cresse. After finishing High School in 1948, he enlisted in the United States Air Force. His early service took him to the Korean War supporting a small hilltop radar and early waring site. After Korea and while stationed in Albany, Georgia, he met Annie Lillian (Lil) Hall and they married on January 31,1953. The Air force took Al and Lil to many stateside base locations to include Albany, Tampa, Little Rock, Biloxi, and Omaha. They were stationed in England for three years as well. He was sent on remote tours to include Korea once again, Greenland, Alaska, and nine months on a weather and communication station on a floating ice island in the Artic Circle. Al, after reaching the rank of Technical Sergeant in the Air Force, transitioned to the US Army as a Warrant Officer in 1967 and was stationed in El Paso. He ultimately garnered the rank of Chief Warrant Officer 2 before retirement in 1970.
After his retirement, Al and Lil settled in Tallahassee, Florida becoming long time residences there. He joined the US Postal Service and ultimately retired with over 30 years of civil service. While still at the Post Office and throughout most of his “retirement”, Al was a commercial fisherman setting out into Gulf waters from Saint Marks and Panacea, Florida. In an overwhelming desire to continue serving others, he joined the US Coast Guard Auxiliary being called on many occasions to rescue stranded boaters and fellow fisherman. In 2010, Al and Lil moved to Destin, Florida to be with their sons and grandchildren.
Al was the consummate sportsman, and jack of all trades. His fishing skills were unmatched both on salt and fresh waters and he hunted big and small game alike. He was a military pistol and rifle marksman, and became an NRA National Champion in rifle competitions. The polar bear wreaking havoc on the Artic Station, including killing their dogs instigated Al’s skills the hard way. He was the only “Yank” on the local English Pub dart team and could shoot billiards like few could. Al could build, repair, or jerry rig just about everything being adept in auto repair, welding, carpentry, brick laying, barn building, boat building, camper trailer construction, gardening, and you name it. Most of all, Al was a believer in Jesus Christ, a faithful member of his church, a devoted husband, and dedicated father.
Al is survived by his oldest son, Craig Cresse and his youngest, Jeff Cresse; who’s married to Kathleen Cresse. His surviving grandchildren are Katrina LeBlanc, Zach Cresse, Caroline Ward, and Kiersten Cresse. He is preceded in death by his wife, Annie Lillian Cresse; his parents, Alfred and Beatrice Cresse; and his sister Willnira (Willie) Atkinson. Al is the last of his first cousins and close kin.
Al will be laid to rest on Saturday, May 28, 2022 at Memory Gardens located on 4037 North Monroe Street, Tallahassee, Florida, 32303. A simple grave side service will be held at 11:00 a.m. for family and others to attend. Davis Watkins Funeral Home of Fort Walton Beach, in conjunction with Abby Funeral Home & Memory Gardens are handling all arrangements. Please do not send flowers or such to home(s) or gravesite. If inclined to do so, a memorial gift in Al’s honor can be made to Immanuel Anglican Church with memo, to the “building fund” mailed to 250 Indian Bayou Trail, Destin, Fl 32541.