Alex R. Cocoma (aka “Uncle Al”), age 87, passed away peacefully on Aug. 24, 2009, after a short illness. \r\r\n\r\r\n He was born on October 9, 1921, in Bad Ems, West Germany to the late George and Elizabeth Cocoma. In 1940, Uncle Al graduated from St. Thomas High School in Rockford. In 1942, he was drafted into the U.S. Army Air Corps, where he served as an aircraft electrician. He spent 21 years working for the Chicago Western Indiana Railroad, based out of Dearborn Street Station in Chicago, where he served as Yard Master. He was a member and vice chairman of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen. \r\r\n\r\r\n Uncle Al lived 37 years in Durand and was a member of St. Mary Catholic Church and the American Legion Gold Star Post #676. He was also a member of the Baltic Lodge No. 56 in Rockford. \r\r\n\r\r\n Uncle Al is survived by his three brothers: George (Donna) of Oklahoma; John (Susan) of Durand; and Charles of Rockford. He was the proudest and most favorite uncle to 12 nieces and nephews, as well as 14 great nieces and nephews. He never missed a birthday wish or anniversary card, was famous for his generous heart, kind manner, unique sense of humor, as well as his fondness of photography, Frank Sinatra, and all things chocolate. \r\r\n\r\r\n Visitation from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., Sat., Aug. 29, in McCorkle Funeral Home, 101 Main St., Durand. Funeral Mass to be held at 10:30 a.m. in St. Mary Catholic Church, Durand. \r\r\n\r\r\n In lieu of flowers, a private memorial will be established in Uncle Al’s honor.