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Death of the Rev. David Luther Alderfer

Rev. David L. Alderfer, age 74, died Tuesday, June 30, 2020, in Wheaton, Illinois. Born in Lock Haven PA, he was the son of the late Rev. Dr. Ralph L. Alderfer and Marion (Moyer) Alderfer. He was a graduate of Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA, and the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, and pursued further studies in the Ancient Near East at the University of Pennsylvania. He was married to Kay Soder of Downers Grove until her death in 2015. 

He was ordained as a pastor in 1971 in what is now the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He served parishes in Pennsylvania and Illinois, and as Chaplain to the Deaconess Community in Gladwyne PA. He held positions on the staff of the national offices of the ELCA in both Philadelphia and Chicago. 

He was a member of Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Downers Grove. He was an avid philatelist and was a renowned expert in British Machin stamps, about which he co-authored a book and a monthly column in Linn’s Stamp News. He had a love of orchids and good food. 

He is survived by sister RuthAnn (Paul) Bartlett of PA; sisters-in-law: Sara Soder Logan and Lisa Soder both of CA; brother-in-law, Tom (Leigh Ann) Soder of GA; niece: Megan Bartlett, and nephews Colin (Valeriia) Bartlett and Erik Soder; an aunt and uncle, and cousins. 

The family thanks the staff at Brighton Gardens in Wheaton for their care of David in his final years. Special thanks go to David’s friend, Marlin Schilling, for his Christ-centered ministry with David these past years. 

The funeral will be Tuesday, July 7th. Visitation at 10 AM until the time of the funeral service at 11:00 AM, at Adams-Winterfield & Sullivan Funeral Home, 4343 Main Street, (1 block south of Ogden) in Downers Grove, IL 60515. CDC precautions will be followed and masks must be worn. The service may also be viewed at via live stream. Interment will be next to his wife in Clarendon Hills Cemetery. 

Contributions may be made to Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 4501 Main St., Downers Grove IL 60515. 

Arrangements by Adams-Winterfield & Sullivan Funeral Home, 630-968-1000.

Copyright © 2020, Metropolitan Chicago Synod, ELCA. All rights reserved.

Unless otherwise noted, photography and cover art are by Synod Photographer, N. Gaby Valladolid.

This obituary, as well as the portrait of the Rev. Alderfer, are provided by his family. 

Submissions for the monthly Metro Word Newsletter are due on the 15th of each month. 

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Metropolitan Chicago Synod, ELCA · 1420 W Dickens Ave · Chicago, IL 60614-3004 · USA

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