Cover photo for Alan "Al" Guernsey's Obituary
Alan "Al" Guernsey Profile Photo
1937 Alan 2023

Alan "Al" Guernsey

November 21, 1937 — August 12, 2023

Davenport, Barrington

Al may have left us for Heaven, but that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about him! Let’s take a brief tour of his 85 years. Born in Bramanville, NY with the last name Guernsey (a dairy cow), Al fittingly spent much of his early years on a dairy farm where he often slept in the barn with the cows so his family could rent out rooms. Although the smell wasn’t so great, Al never lost his love for cows (or any animal for that matter) and could do one heck of a cow impression (smell included). Another huge influence on Al’s life was his dad, who was the town’s piano teacher. Al had an absolute passion for music (pretty much anything but rap…and John Denver, for some reason) that stayed with him throughout his life. Being from Upstate NY, Al couldn’t get enough of the outdoors, and as a teen, he worked as a cave tour guide at the Howe Caverns in Cobleskill, NY. As an octogenarian, he “worked” as a tour guide of everything he saw (slowest person to walk with in human history).

Al attended college at Alfred University in NY where he studied Ceramic Engineering and was ROTC. After graduating, he served his Army active duty in Chicago until he was honorably discharged. After starting his career in the steel industry and realizing he was a born salesman (and BS-er), Al began as a stockbroker at Hornblower and Weeks, Hemphill Noyes. He stayed with the “same company” (although it was sold, acquired, merged, etc. countless times) until his retirement from Morgan Stanley at age 81. During his career, Al worked his way up from a cold caller to #1 in his office, listed on the Barrons Top 100 Brokers, and the head of his own team, The Griffo/Guernsey Group. Al was an avid Chicago sports fan, so it was truly fun for him that he started his career working next to Brian Piccolo, and then as a successful wealth manager, he served some of Chicago’s great sports figures like Harry Caray. Al loved what he did and the clients and team he worked with.

Al also loved his wife, Sue. He and Sue were set up on a date in Kansas City, where he was travelling for work and she was stationed as a stewardess for TWA. One of Al’s biggest accomplishments in life was when he convinced Sue’s Army Lt. Col. father to let a Protestant kid from New York marry the oldest of 9 from a Chicago Irish Catholic Family. Al spent his married life getting teased by his in-laws – and boy did he revel in it. Quick-witted and always ready with a comeback and joke, Al was the life of the party. He also was one of the best pranksters and storytellers there was. Al and Sue were married for 55 years. Starting in a small apartment on Michigan Ave, Al and Sue spent most of their marriage in Barrington, IL and retired to a beautiful home in Naples, FL. They loved to travel together, enjoy their friends, and be with their family.

Although Al spent his work life in the skyscrapers of downtown Chicago, at his heart, he was always a country boy. He and his family spent their early summer vacations with his parents and sister in Otisco, NY before he found his favorite place on earth, Minocqua, WI, where his family still spends their summers.

Al was predeceased by his father Sheldon Guernsey, mother Helen McMillan, and sister Janice Stevenson. He is survived by his wife Susan; his four children Timothy (Carolyn) Guernsey, Kelly (Steven) Kadlec, Shannon (Lee) Coulter, and Brendan (Kim) Guernsey; and his 10 grandchildren. We were blessed to learn many valuable lessons from Al during his 85 years, among them: Don’t treat anyone poorly because in a flip of a coin, your roles could be reversed; Don’t ever lie; You just can’t be an idiot… and Graham crackers with liver sausage can be considered a meal.

Al had a wonderful life full of friends, music, family, laughter…and frustrating his wife. We have always said that much of Sue’s life has been spent waiting on Al (she’d have their 4 kids ready in the car, and he’d then hop in the shower!), but now we know he is happily waiting for her with our Lord.

Please join us in celebrating Al on Saturday, August 26, 2023. We will have a visitation from 10am to 12pm, and a service at 12pm, at Davenport Family Funeral Home (149 W Main St Barrington, IL 60010). A luncheon will follow at Docks in Wauconda.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Wounded Warrior Family Support, wwfs.org.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Alan "Al" Guernsey, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, August 26, 2023

10:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

Davenport Family Funeral Home and Crematory

149 West Main Street, Barrington, IL 60010

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Starts at 12:00 pm (Central time)

Davenport Family Funeral Home and Crematory

149 West Main Street, Barrington, IL 60010

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Guestbook

Visits: 31

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree