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Douglas Vincent Anderson

Centenarian, medical researcher, dedicated Episcopalian

Douglas Vincent Anderson, who was 100 years old, died peacefully on January 16, 2019.

He was born July 26 1918 in Alexandria, Saint Ann, Jamaica to Ezekiel Mannaseh Anderson and Rebecca Keturah Paris. He was the second youngest of five surviving children, Lena, Gwendolyn, Sydney and Evans.

He came to the United States as a college student and settled in Detroit, Michigan, where he attended Wayne State University, earning a bachelor’s of science degree in chemistry.

He met and married a fellow Jamaican, Vera Gertrude Norman and they soon had two sons, Michael and David, and a little later a daughter, Sharon, who was also known as Spring.

After college he worked in research at Wayne State University for about 17 years. He then established several companies in the healthcare field. He worked to manufacture reagents (a substance or mixture for use in chemical analysis or other reactions) for medical tests such as those for sickle cell anemia and diabetes. He also worked, sometimes simultaneously, for several hospital labs and doctor’s offices in the Detroit area.

He also spent time in politics as the supervisor of Royal Oak Township, Michigan after moving to the Detroit suburb.

Throughout this time he remained an active member of several Detroit area churches, including administrative and leadership roles at Grace Episcopal, St. Timothy’s Episcopal and finally All Saints Episcopal. 

Time, the loss of his firstborn child, Michael, and a bout with prostate cancer finally took their toll and forced him into retirement. He moved to California, where his two remaining loving children resided.

“He and Vera brought with them an energy and a presence exemplified by their Jamaican roots, their acceptance of all as family and their joyful smiles,” a family spokesperson said.

Mr. Anderson is survived by his wife, Vera; son, David (Kathy); daughter, Sharon (William) and their children Adam, Alexandra and Naomi; grandchildren from their firstborn son, Michael (Shirley), Michael (Angela) and Lee (Bianca); and great grandchildren Micah, Jonathan and Addison.

The family would like to thank the palliative care and hospice teams from Kaiser Permanente as well as the staff and caregivers of Montclair Royale assisted living facility for their care and concern.

Mr. Anderson was a staunch advocate for education as an answer for much of what ails this world.

In lieu of flowers the family asks for donations to be made to one of several charities: The United Negro College Fund at uncf.org/ways-to-donate; Doctors Without Borders at donate.doctorswithoutborders.org; The American Cancer Society at cancer.org/involved/donate; St. Ambrose Episcopal Church at stambroseclaremont.org/giving; St. Mark’s Episcopal Church at stmarksupland.org/ give; or All Saints Episcopal Church of Detroit at allsaintsdetroit.org.