In Memoriam: Alan Grover Carter (Jan. 17, 1946 – March 12, 2022)

March 2022 Posted in Obituary


Dr. Alan Grover Carter passed away on March 12, 2022. He was born January 17, 1946 in Logan, Utah to Grover Carter and Grace (Anderson) Carter where his father was completing his stint as an army physician.

In 1950 the family fell in love with Hood River, Oregon. Grover joined a medical practice there; for many years he was the only Board-certified surgeon in Hood River Valley. Alan graduated from the University of Oregon with a BS in Biology in 1968, and made life-long friendships with his brothers from Sigma Phi Epsilon, and a fiance, Laurie Armstrong. He applied for a commission in US Naval Air and entered basic training in March of 1969.

While Laurie was planning a wedding in Forest Grove, the Vietnam War intensified, and leaves were cancelled. On July 12, 1969, the day after Alan received his wings, Laurie flew to Pensacola to marry him in the chapel on the Naval Air Station with her sister, Molly Armstrong, attending. After his training was completed, he served in the air wing on the USS Constellation and the America as a radar officer on F-4s (Phantoms).

He returned to Portland with his wife, a St. Bernard, and a Siamese cat where he enrolled at Portland State. He worked towards a second degree in Public Health while he volunteered in different dental offices, worked for a concrete contractor, and applied to dental schools alongside thousands of veterans and lottery losers who were applying at the same time. He was elated to be accepted to his first choice, the University of Oregon Dental School (now part of OHSU). Four years later when he received his DMD degree, he and Laurie fell in love with Silverton, just as his parents had loved Hood River. He opened his dental practice in 1978 and retired forty years later.

That is the skeleton of his life, the body was full of love, good times, family, deathdefying adventures, travel, and hard work. He liked working with his hands with carpentry and wood carvings; he loved his dogs and cats. He was happiest out of doors: he loved skiing, river rafting, and the cabin he designed and built with Tony and Kathy Wildman. However, most of all, he loved his family.

Those who did not know him well thought he was very quiet and reserved, they didn’t know how much fun he was, his quick wit and his peaceful nature. He is survived by his wife, Laurie; (the last coherent thing he said to a nurse in the ER was “Marriage is a wonderful thing”); his daughters and sons-in-law, Danielle (Carter) and Shawn Anderson, and Alyson (Carter) and Larry Cavasso; his grandchildren, Carter and Dylan Anderson, and Brody and Adalyn Cavasso; his brother, Ralph Carter MD; sisters, Claire Carter, Gail Arends, and Ellen Carter; brother-in-law, Henrik Aberg; sisters-in-law, Molly (Norman) Reiss, Kathleen (Tony) Wildman, and Judith (Don) Coleman. He was also close to his nephew Bill Wildman. He was predeceased by his parents and his sister Lynn Carter.

Our deep gratitude for the kind and loving treatment Alan and Laurie received from the Silverton Fire Department, and the Salem Hospital ER and Pulmonary- Cardiac ICU. We owe so much to our health care workers.

A graveside service will be held at Willamette National Cemetery on Wednesday, April 13, 2022 at 11:00 a.m.

Alan would want any donations to be made to Earthwatch Institute ( or
International Rescue Committee (


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