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Larry was one of those people who made
an unforgettable impression in the lives
of the people who knew him. Whether it was
his odd sense of humor or a compassionate
act of kindness, Larry seemed to make friends
no matter where he went.
Larry acquired a love of cooking at a young
age and made it his career, developing even
more friends and loyal customers at
establishments such as the Pflugerville
tavern and The Dodge City steakhouse.
But alas Larry did have some problems just
like all the rest of us. Because of the
type of person that Larry was he never did
anything about his own Turmoil.
For a long time Larry hid his problems and
went on trying to please everyone else,
until there came a time when things built
up so much that Larry had finally reached
his breaking point.
With years of anguish bottled up inside
and feeling so insecure, Larry turned
to alcohol for answers. And as we all know
the answers do not lie at the bottom
of a bottle. It took Larry a long time
to realize that but he finally came to
understand that drinking wasn’t helping.
With his new found hope Larry tried to
quit drinking on his own but to no avail.
Larry then tried the local services
available, going in and out of rehab
several times, Larry still couldn’t seem
to heal himself. Out of ideas and at the
end of his rope Larry turned to God.
Joining the teen challenge program Larry
seemed to find himself. Now all he had
to do is pick himself up and dust himself
off. Which he did. And no it wasn’t easy
nor was it quick.
With many more ups and downs we all noticed
the subtle changes. And Larry vowed to
beat this thing once and for all.
It was towards the end of December 1999
when I last spoke to Larry, he said that
he was entering a strict three-month
program and that he wouldn’t be able to
contact anyone while he went through
the program.
After the three months had passed we all
were very hopeful that Larry’s battle,
was over. But Larry never called.
We began to worry and I filled out a
missing persons report, but it didn’t help
no one could find Larry.
In April of 2000 we finally found
out that Larry had indeed done the program
that he had moved into a halfway house
and was doing very well for the first
time in a long time.
Larry was on his way to a very good life.
He was making new friends and began cooking
and working again. Larry hadn’t contacted
anyone yet because he was still working
on himself and wasn’t quite ready yet
but well on his way.
Unfortunately Larry had been through so much
that his poor tired body could no longer
hold up. He had beaten the battle of wills,
but his body lost the war.
When we got that horrible phone call
in the middle of the night our lives
were changed forever.
Our beautiful Larry who we tried so hard
to find was dead.
We love him, we miss him and we never
got to say goodbye. After all the what ifs?
…. And why’s ?… we learned a great lesson.
Don’t ever; ever take life for granted.
You do matter, you are loved. And time
is a precious thing not to be wasted.
My hope is that anyone who reads this will
look past the problems, the confusion,
and the everyday worries that plague
us all and embrace the love and compassion
that’s underneath. Don’t waste a single
opportunity to tell someone how much you
love them, for you never know just how
quickly they can be taken away.