Vernon Alden, Franklin, PA

John Flynn Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc.

October 23, 2021

Vernon Alden, Franklin, PA - obit
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FRANKLIN, Pennsylvania (MyValleyTributes) – On Saturday, October 23, 2021, the world lost the absolute greatest clunk-headed sucker, Vernon Gary Alden, Sr., age 72.

Vern was born on April 28, 1949 in Van, Pennsylvania. He was lovingly adopted and raised by his grandparents, the late John and Weltha (Cotterman) Alden.

Vern grew up in Van and graduated from Cranberry High School.

He worked at Franklin Steel for 17 years before retiring and going to truck driving school. He was an OTR truck driver and loved traveling the country with his wife and driving partner, Janet, whom he married on February 15, 1986. They traveled through all 48 states and into Canada. Vern retired from truck driving in 2008 and moved to South Carolina in 2012.

Vern was an avid hunter and fisherman throughout his life and enjoyed dirt track racing and later enjoyed watching NASCAR racing with his late friend, Rod; they are watching the races together again. Vern was also a handyman and was always working on some project or building something. He lovingly taught his kids and grandkids many of these handyman skills, usually growling the whole time. Vern loved camping and enjoyed spending time around the fire with his camping friends at Kozy Rest and Croff State Park. He also loved cruising the neighborhood in his golf cart. He was aptly nicknamed Grumpy Bear by his grandkids and he loved giving them a hard time pretending he was a grumpy old man. Grumpy Bear’s love ran deep and he never met a stranger. It didn’t matter if you were serving him his morning coffee at McDonald’s or cashing him out at the grocery store, you were fair game for his shenanigans and instantly a friend. He was the kind of guy that would do anything to help you out and then jokingly and incessantly harass you for needing his help. He most recently enjoyed spending time with his great-grandchildren since moving back to Pennsylvania in May 2021.

Vern is survived by his wife, the former Janet Osten; four sons, Vernon Alden, Jr. and wife, Ruthie, of Clarion, John Paul Alden of Clarion, David Myers and wife, Tammy, of Franklin and Shawn Douglass and wife, Marie, from Perrysburg, Ohio; two daughters, Shelia Alden of Bluntsville, Alabama and Becky May and husband, Brian, of Mercer; grandchildren, Bryan Lawson of Akron, Ohio, Samantha Hannah and husband, Nick, of Franklin, Steven Myers and wife, Kali, of Franklin, Shannon Free and husband, Brad, of Cooperstown, Shaylee Myers and fiancé, Brandon Fitzgerald, of Franklin, Isaac Douglass and Isabelle Douglass, of Perrysburg, Ohio, Tim Wilson of Lexington, North Carolina, Nicholas Leathe and fiancée, Rachel Davis, of Hermitage, Sara Bailey and husband, Marcus, Jr., of Hubbard, Ohio, Jacob Leathe of Mercer, Robert Leathe II of Sharon, Brianna May of Mercer, Evan Alden and Tyler Alden, of Bluntsville, Alabama, Becky Mahle-Myers of Clarion, Sylvia Deppen and Daisy Brown, of Ohio; great-grandchildren, Chandler, Peyton and Hunter Fitzgerald, of Franklin, MacKenzie, Myles and Madisyn Free, of Cooperstown, Zane Sires and Aemelia Hannah, of Franklin, Delaney and Delilah Leathe, of Hermitage and Harper Bailey of Hubbard, Ohio; former son-in-law, Robert Leathe of Mercer; nieces, Debbie, Jack and significant other, Steve Blum, of Cranberry, Jennifer Jack of Van and nephew, Curtis Alden and wife, Monica, of Oil City; special friends, The Mob Squad, Ronnie and Judy James of Duncan, South Carolina, Paul and Angi Perkins of Laurens, South Carolina, Gil and Sharon Clardy of Spartanburg, South Carolina, Pete Hanniwalt of Renfrew, Ronnie and Linda Addison of Dacono, Colorado and his faithful furry companion, Mitze.

He was preceded in death by his grandparents; his birth mother, Helen (Alden) Irwin; a sister and three brothers; three grandsons, Alan James Leathe, Aaron Carter Leathe and Leroy Arnold Leathe; a great-grandson, Easton James Free; close friends, Rod Kosciuszko and Debbie Hanniwalt and his two other furry companions, Ginger and Pepe.

Viewing will be at John Flynn Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 2630 E. State Street, Hermitage, PA 16148 on Friday, November 5, 2021 from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. The service will be at 11:00 a.m. at the funeral home following visitation.

A luncheon will immediately follow at Shenango Township Building, 3439 Hubbard-Middlesex Road West Middlesex, PA 16159. 

Friends may sign the guest book at

A television tribute will air Sunday, October 31, at the following approximate times: 6:27 p.m. on WYTV and 6:58 p.m. on MyYTV.

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