Alicia was born on October 7, 1933 to Paul Davis Loranger and Eleanore McCarthy. She was raised in Torrance as an only child of Paul and her step-mother Helen Loranger. She adored and was proud of her father Paul who was the first Chevrolet dealer in Southern California. He unfortunately died early of a heart attack when Alicia was 18. This had a big effect on her life.
Alicia attended Torrance High School and graduated in 1951. She was very active at school and made special life-long friends, the Hi-Lo's, during her high school years. They have remained close throughout life. Alicia was very grateful for their friendship, laughter, unconditional support and love over their lives together.
She continued her education at Whittier College (the first in her family to graduate college) and received a Bachelor's of Arts degree in Education. She went on to teach in the Torrance public schools as an elementary teacher. She loved teaching children and always looked back on those years fondly. She had a special gift of connecting with children because she always had a playful heart and fun approach.
Alicia married Ron Anderson in 1965 and they soon adopted one son, Darin in 1967. Alicia was a very loving and affectionate mother to her "Baby Boy." She taught him about kindness, humor and laughter, compassion, consideration, understanding and kindness. Alicia was very proud of her son and how he 'turned out." Did she ever share pictures and stories about her son and his family with you? Darin married Lori in 2001. Alicia and Lori ("DIL" as she was affectionately called for Daughter-in-Law) had a very special and loving relationship together. Many of her fondest recent memories were organized by Lori including the Las Vegas trip and Celine Dion concert for her 70th birthday. She then had her 75th birthday with a handful of special friends taking a limousine to Beverly Hills Hotel for dinner with a special appearance by Lionel Richie and then off to Wicked.
Alicia was blessed with so much in her life, incredible friends, family and a lot of laughter. Unfortunately, she wasn't blessed with good health. In 1975, Alicia became one of the first 100 open heart patients in the world. She was in the hospital for over nine months isolated in a 12x9 foot plastic bubble fighting off infections. Her survival was tenuous and she was not expected to make it. These health challenges persisted throughout her life, with three more open heart surgeries, a colostomy, knee replacement, numerous angioplasties, neuropathy, femur "fusions/pin insertions," and severe arthritis, to name a few. She often joked that she was generous enough to "volunteer" for these surgeries so we and 20 other families didn't have to.
Not only was she a modern medical miracle, but she had an amazingly positive attitude. She a couple moments of depression in her life, but even throughout life and during her last week, she truly loved life and was so grateful to awake every morning. She was blessed with so many dear and wonderful friends.
Most people though would say they were blessed to have Alicia in their lives because she was a true friend. She would take a genuine interest in them, be happy for their joys and comfort them when they were down. She would always make the time for others.
One thing anyone would immediately recognize about Alicia was her fashion sense and color coordinated attire and accessories. Everything always matched. Most people though, were immediately drawn to Alicia because of her warm smile and incredible sense of humor. She would regularly have friends in stitches from her jokes, impersonations or some skit that she would come up with.
Her greatest joy, without a doubt, was her grandchildren, Luke and Aubrie who were born in 2003 and 2005. "Nona" as she is known to them, was so proud and loved them with her whole heart. She was an amazing grandma and they adored her. If you visited Alicia's townhome or had a phone call with her, you would know they were her greatest joy.
Alicia was truly a gift from God, a beacon of hope and love that we will keep in our hearts to shape the way we approach the rest of our lives.