Alton D. Griffen

By October 14, 2014 Obituaries

Alton D. Griffen of Moncks Corner SC, age 66, passed away October 14, 2014 at a local hospital after a lengthy illness.Alton was born in Charleston SC on November 2, 1947 to Dannie E and Mary C Griffin. He retired from Monroe County Sherriff’s Office as a Video Production Officer. Alton loved to travel with his partner Lew and loved all 4 of his Brussels Griffons, one of which passed away 12 hours prior to Alton’s death. He was also a member of the Brussels Griffon Rescue.

He is survived by his husband of 37 years Lew O’Connell; daughter Kim (Bill) Runyan, grandchildren Michelle and Ben, all of Martinez CA; sister Edna Brown; niece Kippi (David) Jones; nephew Dave Brown; nephew Greg Brown; nephew Grady Clements; and many grand nieces and nephews and 1 great grand nephew. He was preceded in death by his parents, sister Galye Bunch and brother in law Morrell Brown.

Private services will follow. Memorial gathering will be announced at a later date.


  • Carole & Truman Lyon says:

    Dear Lew,

    We are saddened to learn that Al died. We remember many of the good times we shared with you both. We are praying that our Lord will be present in your life and that you will find comfort.

    “The Lord is nigh unto unto heaven that are of a broken heart…” Ps 34:18 KJV

    Please accept our deepest sympathy.

    With love,

    Carole and Truman Lyon

  • Bonnie and David says:

    Lew, Edna and family,

    Our condolences to all. Al shared many of his memories of his childhood fishing experiences, and his special times living in The Florida Keys and the Blue Ridge Mountains. He made great desserts and shared them generously. He and Lew shared a deep love for each other. Love is the greatest gift to be embraced, shared, and passed along. Blessings to all. Bonnie and David

  • PAM KELLER says:

    Dear friend Lew;

    There are no words to give you comfort at this sad time..but please know that my prayers
    and thoughts are with you. Al was a really nice guy and he was blessed with a faithful and
    loyal partner (you). I am so sorry for your loss and if there is anything Suzy or I can do to
    help you—please do not hesitate to call us.

    Pam Keller

  • Kay and Cathy says:

    Lew we are so sorry for your loss… Al made us laugh every time y’all came to the diner… we will miss him dearly and If you need us for anything please don’t hesitate to ask.

  • Bill & Karen Wilkinson says:


    Such a sad time. Our fond memories in the Keys whether it was political campaigns, parties or cruises, we had such fun. We can just see Al meeting up with Mary Kay and Julia and laughing about the past.

    Al was special and will be missed dearly. Our love and prayers are with you.

    Bill & Karen

  • Sandy Troutman says:

    Lew, Edna and family,

    I am so sorry for your loss and cannot express how much Al meant to me. He was like a brother and was always there for me when we lived in the Keys. He is going to be missed by so many people. I always laughed when I was around him and his sense of humor and love for people will be a memory I will not forget. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. He will be missed immensely.

  • Jill says:

    Al, may you rest in peace.
    Joanne and I had plenty of good times and food with y’all.
    Lew you are one strong man and we will be up to visit and pay our respects soon.
    Until then…we love you. Jill & Joanne

  • Denise says:

    Lew, It was my pleasure to meet and care for you and Alton. Dr Kaplan and I were sadden by the lose of Alton. Our Prayers are with you at this time of sorrow.

  • Cindy Cook says:

    Dear Lew,
    I’m so very sad to hear of Al’s passing. He was a wonderful, kind and funny man. I always enjoyed his posts, pictures and videos on the Griffy list. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.
    Much love,

  • Kathie Long says:

    I just received the news about Al. Lew, you and he were fortunate to have found each other and share so many wonderful times. I also heard about Sookie passing 12 hours before. I’m pretty sure God didn’t want Al to be alone without a companion and they’re looking after each other now. Prayers for you and the fur kids.

  • cici christian says:

    Dearest Lew,
    It is so hard to read of Al’s passing. I wish I had words to help you. I know you will lean on your faith as you both always did. God’s plan unfolds each day.
    There is hardly a week that goes by that we don’t play with the “Mr Wonderful” recording that ya’ll sent…we laugh and remember all the funny things…
    I hope you will find peace soon.
    I am so sorry to hear about little Sookie as well…I agree with Cindy about her going to be with Al…I so hope you will keep in touch with us all…when you can
    cici & mr wonderful

  • Cristen Barry says:

    Dear Lew – so sorry to hear of sweet Al’s passing. What a wonderful man he was. Sending you many big, huge, Griffy hugs.

    xoxo Cristen

  • Ron and Sharon says:

    Dear Lew,
    We are so saddened to hear about Al. You both have been missed from Griffy Chat since Al became too sick to participate. You made us laugh plus your words of wisdom were appreciated as you always took the high road. You both have been good friends to our group and individuals and the world is a little sadder without your humor and kindness. Your faith has gotten you to this place and God will help and comfort you, Lew, until you meet Al, Sookie and your other loved ones once again
    We are so sorry to hear about Sookie but know it must be a comfort that she is in Heaven with Al.
    We will be praying that God will comfort and give you strength during this time.
    We send our love and prayers.
    “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.” 2 Cor. 1:3-5

  • Flo Schubert says:

    I am so sorry to learn of Al’s death. He was a wonderful man with a wonderful heart. He was a best friend to NBGR and rescue. I will always remember his delightful posts regarding “a day in the life of his Griffs.”

  • Carol Morgan says:

    I was so sorry to hear about Al’s death. He fought a good fight and he will be missed by everyone that had the pleasure to know him. Even if it was only through the Rescue Griffy Chat. He made us all laugh. I hope your heart is full of all the happy memories you have of your 37 years together.
    May God bring you peace.
    Hugs & Blessings,

  • Felicia M. Cashin says:

    Dear Lew,

    My heart is so sad to hear of Al and Sookie’s passing. Your loss is doubled.

    I so admired both of you and the relationship you shared. Thirty-seven years of loving, caring and sharing is a benchmark for others to follow.

    From reading the above I see the same theme in all the posts. Al made people laugh. He shared his wisdom. He made his own obituary. I’m so glad I had the opportunity to have been part of the list during the time both of you were active.

    On behalf of NBGR, I want to thank you and the memory of Al for all you have done for the Brussels Griffon community.

    Felicia M. Cashin

  • MaryBeth says:

    My dear friend Lew,
    Al was so special, so funny, so smart, so much fun to be around. I adored him. He will be so missed.
    I can imagine him with Sookie in his lap this moment. That makes me happy.
    I am glad he is out of his broken body and in a better place. You will unite someday. In the meantime,
    treasure your memories, and know you have so many friends that will always be here for you.
    God bless you both.
    Love, mb

  • Connie Dolan Lawrence says:

    Lew, I’m so very sorry to hear of Al and Sookie’s death. Al was quiet the character and made a lasting impression – his wit, compassionate and loving heart will be his legacy. My heart goes out to you in this difficult time.

    Please accept my condolences and know you are in my thoughts.

  • Debbie Harville says:

    Dearest Lew- Our ‘silver fox’- my heart is with you. So many of us hold dear memories of Al, as well as yourself and all our furkids. Always loved his videos and our spirited discussions. I think Sookie went ahead to be there to greet him. That makes me smile to picture it. If there is anything I can do, please let me know.

    Love and prayers to you and your family.

  • Judy says:

    So saddened to hear this news, Lew. The love and devotion that you and Al share for each other, your Griffs, your family and your friends is an inspiration for so many. My prayers are with you.

  • Carol Anderson says:

    Lew, My Mom, Freddie, and I have talked about you often and Mom enjoyed meeting you and Al in Jackson, MS, when you came to adopt Sookie, Mary Beth’s foster Griff.. I will always remember you and Al, and I will cherish my memories of you both. God bless you, and I pray that God will wrap his arms around you and comfort you during this time. Keeping you in my prayers.

  • Kris Hinterberg says:

    Dear Lew,
    Your El Jobean friends are sad to hear of Al’s passing. You were great neighbors and always worked hard to make El Jobean a better place to live. You both will always hold a place in my heart.

    Love Kris