David Aldridge

December 8, 1953January 11, 2021

David Thomsen Aldridge, 67, died Monday, January 11, 2021. Visitation will be from 1 to 2 p.m. Monday, January 18, 2021 at McLaren’s Funeral Home, 801 19th St. in West Des Moines, with a memorial service following at 2 p.m.

David was born December 8, 1953, in Omaha, NE, but spent most of his life in Des Moines and West Des Moines. He graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1972 and earned a business degree from Simpson College in ‘76. Following his passion for all things audio, he applied himself to electronics engineering at DMACC and graduated two years later.

Dave worked for Phillips Petroleum in Bartlesville, OK, Aurora, CO and Odessa, TX. He decided to move back to Des Moines to pursue a different career path and to assist his parents, who were very grateful for his help. His financial-adviser career began at the downtown office of Merrill-Lynch in 1986.

Through mutual friends, David met the love of his life, Norma James. They kindled a relationship and were married October 14, 1989 at Plymouth Congregational Church, and began married life in Windsor Heights. Their sons, Alex and Bennett, were born in 1992 and 1995, and the family settled in West Des Moines in 1997.

David held a series of financial adviser positions with Merrill Lynch, Raymond James and finally Berthel Fisher. His clients and his enormous social circle were big priorities in his life. David treasured his friends and he loved a party. He also was a lover of nature, which he enjoyed while fishing or playing golf, both of which he shared with his sons.

Dave was proud to be an Eagle Scout, a 30-year member of Gnemeth Lodge #577, and a 32nd degree Scottish Rite mason recognized with the Knight Commander of the Court of Honour. He served for years on the Des Moines Consistory Sound Committee, and the Investment Committee of the Iowa Scottish Rite Masonic Foundation. He was an active member of Za Ga Zig Shrine, and Court 46, Royal Order of Jesters, but was best known for his exceptional service planning and preparing banquets for Shrine events.

Uppermost in Dave’s life though, was family. He was devoted to Norma and his sons, parents, brother and sister, the big-German-family relatives, and to his wife’s family as well. Like his mother Liz, David never met a stranger and was genuinely interested in other people. He loved nothing better than to have a short drink and a long visit. He reveled in holiday family get-togethers and was very proud of his two sons.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the Food Bank of Iowa or pantry of your choice.


  • Aaron Yockey, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Seth Yockey, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Alex Aldridge, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Bennett Aldridge, Honorary Pallbearer


  • Memorial Visitation

    Monday, January 18, 2021

  • Memorial Service

    Monday, January 18, 2021



David Aldridge

have a memory or condolence to add?

Dutch Koch

January 18, 2021

Dave and I have been best friends, since we met in the 7th grade!

We shared common interests in Scouts (though at different troops), and mowed lawns all summer long to fund our "Saturday morning at half-price" bowling habit, all year long. Dave excelled!

When he returned from Oklahoma, I was glad to reconnect, and to introduce him to my friends in Masonry, the Scottish Rite, and the Shrine. Dave made great friends among these guys; he served as President of the Young Shriners' Club, and really distinguished himself as our go-to guy for planning and preparation of banquet services....

After being last in line, where they scraped the bottom of the pot to squeeze one more meal, Dave vowed, it would never occur under his watch, and it never did! I remember how he fed the multitudes....Irish Stew at the Za Ga Zig St. Patricks Day party; Beef Stroganov at a murder mystery/dinner theater; extravagant buffet stations at Whisky & Wine tastings; heavy hors d'oeuvres at about 25 Potentate's Balls, and his signature marinated filet mignon at numerous events serving up to 450. Dave did all this with a zero budget, and always kept meticulous records so he could do a little better job "the next time".

Dave was always quick to commit to take these leadership roles, and epitomized the willing worker that all volunteer organizations depend on. His larger than life presence, humor, and help will be sorely missed by all who knew him.

Mark Havran

January 18, 2021

Having just learned of this tragedy- our thoughts and prayers go out to the family. It was always a pleasure to talk to Dave and give him a hard time about the Hawkeyes. This is definitely a loss to all of us, yet, knowing all the strengths of Dave and his family, no doubt he will be watching with proud eyes as his boys continue to achieve great things. We are just blessed to have experienced a part of what Dave shared.

Chris Ostlund

January 18, 2021

I also met Dave 47 years ago at Simpson College. I quickly learned this guy was someone to hang out with. He had a real love of music and all things audio which I really liked, but more importantly he liked to laugh, and loved to have a good time. Dave was very kind and loyal to his friends, a "go to" person to seek advice from on many different topics. I appreciated his wonderful listening ability and genuine concern for others.

It is sad that after all of these years all of this gets reduced to a few words, but I guess that is how it goes.

My condolences go out to Norma, Alex, Bennett and family. He talked about you so often and was very proud of you.

Tom Brien

January 17, 2021

I too first met David at Simpson. I didn’t get there till sophomore year, so he was already ‘seasoned’ in the ways of Barker Hall by the time I arrived. We had an an absolute blast. Wrongdaddy’s, hall frisbee, smokeathons, and hunching are all concepts I learned from “ the Mutt”
God Bless his soul and all his family.
He has left a legacy with lots of people.

Russ Spurgeon

January 17, 2021

I, too, met Dave at Simpson College - late Summer 1974 when I arrived as a Freshman. In fact, I think Dave & John Demaris were the first people I met there at the edge of Buxton Park in front of Barker Hall. He knew I was from Des Moines and just walked right up to introduce himself & let me know I had a local friend who was living in the dorm, too. He's been a loyal friend all these year and my financial adviser for close to 30 years. We had many talks about Iowa football/basketball and he was a big Hawkeye fan. My sympathies go out to Norma & his 2 boys. Dave was a good man and very proud of his family. I miss my old friend.

Lynne Van Clark

January 15, 2021

David was such a kind gentle man. I enjoyed working with him. Peace be with you.

John DeMaris

January 13, 2021

Dave and I have been friends since the Summer of 1972 when we met on the campus of Simpson College at an event for incoming Freshman. Since then, we have been the best of friends, sharing our lives and all of the major milestones one achieves over the course of nearly 50 years. His intelligence, his boundless interest and love for life, and his ability to relate to others and stay in touch with them through the years was infectious - - when Muttley would enter the room or show up at a gathering, oh boy, you knew without a doubt that the party could now start. My heart is broken, but the memory of his life and the energy he gave it will always sustain his family and the countless friends he made here on earth. Rest in peace my Brother.

criss gilbert

January 13, 2021

My sincerest condolences to Norma and the boys. My heart goes out to you in this difficult time. I met Dave at Simpson College and we spent many hours listening to music and discussing topics of the day. Dave & I stayed in touch over the years, as did many of the "Barker Boys" and we met often in DSM to reminisce and update each other on our lives. Dave always had a good story to tell about something! We will miss you.