Murphy Funeral Homes

4510 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA


Alvin L. Liebergen

October 21, 1947January 25, 2020

Alvin Lee Liebergen, “Way Big Al” to his friends, was born and raised in Little Chute, Wisconsin to German immigrants, Cecelia and Alvin Liebergen Sr. Al and his wife of nearly 40 years, Catherine Johnson (Carrie), lived in Arlington, Virginia for the past 3 decades. Al met Carrie at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he received his BA in Media. He worked as a Construction Superintendent, managing large commercial real estate projects. One of his proudest accomplishments was the building of The Dean Smith Center on the UNC-CH campus, where his beloved Tar Heels played basketball.

Al was an accomplished athlete. He played basketball at a semi-pro level representing the US Army in Europe. Later in life he used those skills in pick-up games where he beat the neighborhood teenagers. Other passions included architecture, travel, and photography. Beaches and European cities were his favorite destinations. He enjoyed soaking in the culture, touring old buildings and photographing everything he saw. He also loved listening to music and writing silly poems.

Al lived life to its fullest. His storytelling, contagious sense of humor, and sense of adventure drew people to him. He was funny and quick with a joke. He loved spending time with his friends, sharing his knowledge about everything from design and construction, to sports and music.

Al was a true character. He will be greatly missed by everyone who knew him.


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Alvin L. Liebergen

have a memory or condolence to add?

Doug Johnson

February 24, 2020

Oh my gosh, there are so many memories of time with WBA. I'll share the first 2 that come to mind.

My fondest visits were in the tobacco barn home during winters. I was at NCSU and Al would drive out to pick me up so I could spend the weekend in Chapel Hill. It was one of the first times I had felt like an equal with Carrie and Al instead of the little brother. Having fires outside and drinking and playing horseshoes. Had my first moonshine (terrible) and my first set of over exaggerated stories that live on to this day and building on the tradition of taking a simple story and expanding it like the pro.

My second fondest visits were working on the house he built way down that dirt road. Not that I was much help. Mechanical Engineer without any real handy work experience. But every time I'd walk into that house I could see a few things I helped with and a few dings that are still there that I created. But lots of drinking and singing to the best damn music every night.

I guess these memories have shaped me into the earth-shoe I've become. Happy to live a simple, fun, quiet life surrounded by nature deep up north in Maine.

Bruce Johnson

February 24, 2020

My first impression of Al was that he was bigger than life. His smile and his positive approach to life brought happiness and joy to whoever came in contact with him. If you spent a few minutes with Al you always left feeling brighter and lighter on your way. Whenever we got together, I always enjoyed whatever little adventure he had planned. Whether that was playing basketball down at the playground, working on whatever home project he convinced me to help him with (even though I had no ability), finding a great greasy place to eat (my first Waffle House experience), or our annual Christmas weight loss contest----that even when he lost he seemed to find a way to win. His ability to roll with life as it came and never look backwards was always something I admired and attempted to emulate. I have never heard anyone say a bad word about Al. He was a great man, a great husband, and a wonderful spirit. I feel blessed that he was a part of my life and look forward to continuing our adventures in in the afterlife.....I am sure he is already planning stuff for all of us to do to make it a great transition.

Tom Beers

February 23, 2020

Al was a lovely man, and a true 'character'. In an age of faceless 'personalities' he showed us why life should be lived colorfully and it was a great joy to know him. His laugh lingers in memories of grand parties and simple late afternoon summertime chats 'on the porch'. We will never forget that laugh or his many kindnesses. He is missed.

Lee Garnon

February 21, 2020

AlBergen (coined by 4yr old CarterBergen 3 decades ago)
CarrieBergen knows me as LeeBergen, the Kid to Al’s Butch Cassidy!
• stand-off w/union on 10-story bldg
• the office hot dogs went down 2yrs in a row to the field guys & Butch and Sundance
• 2 Basketball “stars” at the playground offered to split up to be fair. We said we’d play them. They scored the first five(to 11). We got the ball back and they lost both games
• the day at the DC b-ball Mecca - Al was second guy to make a free throw- that meant he chose second... the first four were gone. Al picked me, the little loud mouth and two guys who just showed up
The call of the day was “check out the white guys” as we were the only two, you knew who he was talking about. We won 2 games and retired. I was 49 - Al was 53.
Nobody else was 30
Al was really the first guy I’d met that was so much ahead of me. Luckily, they hooked us up in the summer- by basketball time we already clicked.
A pair of shoulders I still stand on.
A brother I’ll always stand beside.
A FEW... and AlBergen is ONE.
Luv Ya, CarrieBergen

Randy Sebero

February 20, 2020

A great man passing. I met Al four years ago at Fairfax Hospital when we were both hoping to receive a new heart.

Al was such a likable guy that we instantly became friends. We were both from WI so we always had cheese head stories to tell. Al love to have fun and constantly joked with fellow patients and the nurses.

Never a dull moment with Al. I spoke with Al a few months ago and he told me he had leukemia but was doing well. He was always so up-beat on life.

RIP Buddy, God has plans for you.


Ginny Tracey

February 9, 2020

I am forever grateful for Carrie and Al taking me under their wings when I first moved to Chapel Hill not knowing a soul. I didn’t know Al well at that point but we became fast friends. Who didn’t love the guy? Al would come scoop me up for some fun-filled adventure while Carrie was off working. Al became the brother I never had, always making me feel protected and assured me that my unsettled life was going to be okay. I think back on “Al quotes” and smile. If only I had been lucky enough to receive one of his famous haikus. I am so blessed our life paths crossed.

The Wisners

February 8, 2020

Seeing that great photo of Al, I can’t believe he is gone. What a presence, what a man. We will always remember Al as so welcoming and friendly to us as newish neighbors, willing to give us advice on home repair, ready with an offer of a drink. My kids remember when Al was healthy and vital, often outside and working on that beautiful house of yours. Or else waving (again with a drink!) from your super social porch. They heard me call him “Mr Al” so they called him “Mr Owl!” I will fondly remember him gamely strapped into that vest and continuing to live life with as much gusto as he could. We feel grateful to you both for inviting us into your home for cheese curds and drinks over the years. Sending lots of love to Carrie. We will miss Al.

Tami Kuether

February 8, 2020

I am sorry to hear about Uncle Junior's passing. He always had an interesting story to tell and I enjoyed listening to him and his unique sense of humor. Carrie, our loving thoughts go out to you during this difficult time.