Alfred Loring Skinner Jr., MD, long-time Mercer Island resident and pediatrician to many Eastside families, died on April 23, 2021, at home, aged nearly 97 years.
Al grew up in Needham, Massachusetts, and was the valedictorian of his high school class. He served as a Naval officer during World War II. He completed pre-med studies at Harvard University and attended Harvard Medical School. He married Sarah Smith Dieckerhoff in February 1951 and moved to Seattle for an internship at Harborview Hospital. After a residency in pediatrics at Massachusetts General Hospital, the family moved to Mercer Island where Al started what would become Mercer Island Pediatrics. He served as a clinical professor at the University of Washington and taught residents at Children’s Orthopedic Hospital. He was the school doctor for Mercer Island School District for many years and the Chairman of the Washington Chapter of Pediatrics. He helped establish the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner program at the University of Washington.
Al and Sarah traveled extensively in their later years. Die-hard Husky football fans, they rarely missed a home game. They had season tickets for the Seattle Opera and the Seattle Gilbert & Sullivan Society. Al was a member of the Wranglers debating group and active in the East Shore Unitarian Church. He played tennis well into his 90s.
Al was preceded in death by a son, Thomas, and his wife Sarah. He is survived by sons Peter Dieckerhoff (Sue) and Matthew Skinner, daughters Jody Bower and Elizabeth Skinner; grandchildren Adam Dieckerhoff, Evan Day (Amy), and Molly Skinner-Day; and three great-grandsons. A memorial service is planned for early August. Remembrances to the Children’s Orthopedic Hospital or Mercer Island Youth & Family Services.