Adventist World Radio (AWR), the radio ministry arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, is mourning the loss of someone leaders defined as “a very special team member.” Alvin McDowell passed away last month at age 96 in Battle Ground, Washington, United States. He had been a part of Adventist World Radio since 1990.
McDowell served as a member of the AWR Board and Technical Advisory Committee for ten years, and as a volunteer field representative in the Northwest for 27 years. Not only was his engineering background and heavy-equipment inspecting skills an asset to AWR, but so was his fervor for spreading the gospel around the world, wrote AWR vice-president for Advancement Cami Oetman. “It was a perfect match!” she wrote in sharing the news of his passing. “Al was wholeheartedly committed to God’s end-time work and loved traveling to share AWR miracle stories.”
McDowell had a powerful personal testimony as well, as he recounted in an AWR newsletter article: “I was in Pearl Harbor in 1941 on a battleship when the Japanese attacked … I told God that if He got me out of that situation alive, I would study my wife’s religion.” McDowell survived and became a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
The AWR team said they praise God for Al’s decades of service.
“Al was a special kind of a person; he was dedicated, passionate, tireless and so much more,” said Dowel Chow, past president of AWR, now retired. “[He] will long be remembered by all those who heard his stories as the AWR Ambassador he was for well over 20 years.”
Chow shared that he had the privilege of going out to several churches with Al and saw firsthand his work, before adding, “In the new earth surely there will many who will be in heaven because of Al's inspiring ministry. His work will follow him!”
Greg Scott, who until recently served as senior vice-president of AWR, seconded.
“Al and his wife Julia were tireless in their service to AWR, often traveling hundreds of miles on the weekends to speak in a different church each Sabbath,” he shared. “He would also represent AWR at the Oregon and Washington Conference camp meetings each year, handing out hundreds of pieces of literature. Other than his family, there was nothing he loved more than sharing the amazing stories of AWR.”
AWR staff is planning to honor Al’s legacy at a special tribute during the AWR rally on December 2nd at the Rockwood Seventh-day Adventist Church in Portland, Oregon, United States.
“We all look forward to reuniting with him in heaven,” wrote Oetman. “He will have so many stories to share of God’s intervention in saving his life and how God used AWR to prepare people for Jesus’ second coming.”