Even as a young boy, Larry loved the military. Perhaps the first hint of this was when he named his cat GI Joe. One of Larry’s aspirations was to become a security guard. He was a security guard for the Brantford General Hospital for three years. When he joined the army at the age of 21, it came as no surprise to his family; he had found his niche. His first and only deployment was his mission to Afghanistan, which lasted just three weeks.

Larry had a light-hearted nature. He never was the serious type, and he knew how to bring out the playful nature in others. He lived his life with a fearless spirit, always enjoying the present moment, and he cared deeply for others.

One Christmas, Larry was on his way to visit and encourage a friend, who was going through a difficult time, when he spotted the perfect Christmas tree. It was not a tree that you could buy at a corner lot. Instead, Larry pulled that tree right from the ground, roots and all, gave it a good shake, and presented it to his friend along with his giant smile – the one that showed his only remaining baby tooth on the left side. Larry once wrote, “The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you can’t do.” Perhaps this was one of those moments.

One obstacle Larry overcame with his light-hearted nature was his inability to run. His buddies often teased him, saying he ran like a girl. But, Larry, who liked to do what people said he couldn’t, learned how to run. In fact, he ran so much, he never did reach his personal goal in body building; his love for running kept him slim.

As a handsome man with a good build, Larry became popular with the ladies. He was attentive, a gentleman, and he knew how to take care of women. He exuded confidence and was comfortable in his own skin. Not only did Larry take care of women, but he extended his giant heart to all who knew him.

Larry was 6’5” with big hands and a giant heart that left its mark on others. Fifty people got tattoos in his memory. Four songs were dedicated to him. One baby was named after him, and two people named their dogs after him. Not bad for a gentle giant.

By Linda Moore

Portrait by Susan Abma