Tehachapi lost a prominent yet humble member of its community Tuesday, June 18. Pastor Daniel Alsop of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church died of a heart attack while visiting family in Boise, Idaho. He was 57.
Born Aug. 23, 1955, Alsop spent his childhood in Fair Oaks, a Sacramento suburb. He married his high school sweetheart, Malinda, in 1975.
After spending a few years as a manager for F.W. Woolworth Company, Alsop returned to college in 1981 at California State University, Fresno. Upon completing his bachelor of arts, he switched gears from earthly to heavenly studies, enrolling at Concordia Theological seminary in Fort Wayne, Ind.
Through the '80s and '90s, Alsop served various Lutheran churches in the western portion of the country. By January 1999, he had begun his service as Good Shepherd's senior pastor.
"This will be difficult on the congregation," said his wife, Malinda. "He was their shepherd and they will be lost without him."
In a previous interview by Jim Murray published by the Tehachapi News on Tuesday, May 14, Alsop said he felt blessed to have so many faithful Christians serving the Lord at Good Shepherd and that he praised God for all the blessings He has provided and continues to provide.
"He was gentle, compassionate and he had more integrity than anyone I have ever known," Malinda said.
Alsop is survived by his wife, Malinda, two children and their spouses, Abraham and Tammy, and Sarah and Jared. The couple also has 10 grandchildren, who Malinda described as the light of Alsop's life.
Services will be Wednesday, June 26, at 11 a.m. inside Country Oaks Baptist Church, 20915 Schout Road. A light lunch will follow the service.
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 329 S. Mill St., Tehachapi.