Deceased October 12, 2013
Alexander "Sandy" Morton died at his Washington, D.C., home on October 12, 2013. He succumbed to a brain tumor which had progressed rapidly since diagnosis in February.
At Amherst, Sandy lived in Stearns dorm as a freshman, majored in economics and was a member of Chi Phi.
Following graduation, Sandy went into the Peace Corps, assigned to Addis Ababa. He returned to enter a Ph.D. program at Harvard, where he roomed with Amherst classmate John Wahlert '65. (He was best man at John's wedding.) Sandy taught at Harvard then moved to an assignment at the Interstate Commerce Commission. After four years, Sandy left this path to begin a life of adventure and travel.
He bicycled Japan, hiked the Himalayas and reached the summit of Mt. Blanc wearing only sneakers. Sandy rode a train from Moscow to Beijing, followed the headwaters of the Mekong River into Vietnam and climbed Mt. Sinai at dawn. He rarely had a fixed itinerary. Once, on a small road in Africa, Sandy spotted two rhinoceroses blocking the road and told his driver to "Back up!" only to find out that a herd of elephants had come up behind them. Like Sandy did in his own life, they left the road. Sandy found his way to another adventure.
Sandy "settled" long enough to buy a house with his companion Tom Pursley in Georgetown. He actively followed his interest in opera and theater and would travel to New York to see a Broadway musical.
In early January of 2013, Sandy embarked on a round-the-world cruise and celebrated his 70th birthday in Auckland on February 6. In May, illness interrupted the trip, and Sandy was flown home.
Juan Meyer '65 confirms that Sandy was surrounded by excellent care and was visited by many friends. He accepted his disease and actively tried to enjoy every day until the end. "An enduring lesson," concludes Juan, "for us all."
Paul Ehrmann '65