Herbert David Anderson bought an air-fryer the last week of November 2022 and was looking forward to using it. He excitedly told his children you could even bake a cake in one. A dedicated and adventurous home cook, he was a regular at the Winn Dixie, but he had only recently developed an enthusiasm for baking. When he died suddenly in his home on December 5th, there was an iced layer cake, or at least two thirds of one, in the domed stand on the kitchen counter.
Herbert, or as many knew him, Andy, is preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Linda Nathey Anderson, his parents, Harris and Vermelle Anderson, and his sister, Cindy Lou Anderson. He is survived by his children, Elizabeth, David, and Katie (Mark); his grandsons, Jack and Andy; his nephews, Shannon (Paula) and Michael, Brooks, John, Daniel and Matthew; and his nieces, Natalie, Sara and Mary Cathrine.
Herbert was born in Shreveport, Louisiana on March 28, 1944, and moved to Mobile with his family as a toddler. He graduated Murphy High School in 1963 and had some fun at the University of Southern Mississippi before volunteering to serve as a Navy Corpsman, a medic, in Vietnam. During his two tours of duty, Andy saved lives, he comforted dying men and lost friends. He saved the life of an injured Bru child and was rewarded by the tribe with an opium smoke-out. As an advisor of a Combined Action Company (platoon), he fought in the battle of Con Tien, Khe Sahn, and at Nguc Ngot. He was wounded twice on the battlefield and received two purple hearts. Having experienced the terrors of war, he joined over 1,000 of his brothers on the National Mall in Washington, DC as part of the historic Veterans Against Vietnam protest in 1971.
Shortly after returning from Vietnam, he ran into Linda Nathey, a friend from his Murphy days. A year and half later they were married at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. He became the 4th generation of his family to go into the oil and gas business, starting a partnership with his father, Harris, and best friend, Peter McGowin. Herbert and Linda made their home on South Monterey Street, where they hosted neighborhood Christmas caroling parties, many family holidays and even a wedding. Their annual Senior Bowl parties were legendary. Herbert knew where to pick all the best blackberries, could trim a Bonsai tree, and make fresh pasta. He led his children on epic bike rides through the streets of downtown Mobile on his ten-speed. He rode motorcycles, took smoke breaks on his morning jogs, and found great joy in cooking pancake breakfasts for his family. He planned and enjoyed taking his family on many road trips across the United States. He traveled to Europe and always made an effort to learn the language of the countries he visited. He had a great vinyl collection and would sing a long full voice, to Otis Redding, Ike and Tina Turner, Queen, David Bowie, Leon Redbone, Jimmy Cliff, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Taj Majal and Bob Seger. He was a collector of walking canes, fountain pens, hats and pocketknives. He was “The Granddude” to Jack and Andy, and shared with them many of his great stories, his love of fishing and his collections.
Andy was an avid fisherman. He built his own flyrods and tied his own flies. He took those flies and rods on trips to Belize, Canada, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado and the Chandeleur Islands. He loved documentaries and was endlessly curious and interested in history and cultures of the world. He didn’t like to play board games, but when his family played Trivial Pursuit, he would sit in an adjacent room and yell out all the answers. He was kind, loving and compassionate but also bullheadedly stubborn and occasionally hot tempered. He was loved dearly and will be missed always. After spreading his ashes in his beloved Gulf of Mexico, his family will celebrate his life at a reception on Dauphin Island when the weather is right. In memory of Andy, please turn the music up and sing along at full volume.
Expressions of condolence for the family may be made at www.hughesfh.com. Hughes Funeral Home, 26209 Pollard Road, Daphne, AL, is assisting the family.