Avon - On June 20, 2021 at the age of 86. Predeceased by his wife Vivian, and Companion Joan Michlin, and sister Donna Frederick. Larry is survived by his children Mary Smith, William (Laurie) VanAllen, Deborah (Peter) Stein, Cindy (Russell) Andrews, Kathy (Tim) Raniewicz, 3 Step-Children, 21 Grandchildren, 35 Great-Grandchildren, Sister Sandy (Albert) Brock, Brother In Law George (Cheryl) Bedford, Special Friends, Amanda and Nanette, many nieces and nephews.
When you hear the name Larry Van Allen, what do you think of? What kind of accomplishments would you think he would list for himself? Well Larry was, well Larry. To describe him and his accomplishments in a few words how would you do it? Here is our version of Larry, our Dad, our grandfather, our great-grandfather.
Anyone talking to Larry would know that his family was his greatest pride and joy.
He would tell everyone he met he was the “luckiest man on earth because he had two families (his and Joan’s) that loved him immensely.
He survived 4 daughters through their teenage years and one son (who wasn’t nearly as unruly, according to dad). However, the running joke with dad was “who was the favorite” of the day (as it usually was the one who was taking him here and there). When it was all said and done, we all were his favorites in our own way.
Dad was very proud of his kids, but his grandkids and great grandkids brought him the greatest pleasure. His grandchildren Larry, Michele, Kaylee, Matthew, Andrew, Allison, Kathryn, Joe, Ryan, Sarah, Kyle, Brianna, and Evan. Dad loved going to all the school functions and sporting events to cheer on the team (However when Caledonia-Mumford played Avon he would cheer for both).
When the great grandkids came along Dad’s smile got even bigger. Nothing he enjoyed more than having a flock of kids running all over his house. He had a lot. Addy, Charlotte, Baby Vivian, Lane, Jack, Devon, Georgia, Oakley, Anneke, Morgan, Elizabeth, Mason, Elliott, Jude, Theo, Ryann, and Cooper Joseph, Faithlynn, Shawn, Aaron and Zachary. Sadly, he will not see the birth of another 3 great grandbabies.
Dad was a proud member of the Lion’s Club for 26 years. Even when he could no longer safely drive at night, a Lion would come pick him up and take him home so he could still attend his meetings. He was very proud of this organization.
While he was raising his kids, Dad was not a religious man. He made sure to attend our first communions and confirmations even though he was not Catholic. However, after meeting Joan, he began attending Aldersgate Church. He attended faithfully every week and during COVID, he would have Cindy help him get the church service on line (Dad had no idea about computers). He would sit back with his arms crossed and his eyes closed and claim he was listening and NOT asleep.
If we had to list his greatest accomplishment, we would have to say it was bigger than life personality. You would be hard pressed to find a person he did not know. When we took him up for his Covid vaccine in Syracuse, one would think Dad would not know anyone. And he didn’t but as we pulled him backwards on the rollator walker, he was having a conversation with the gentleman behind him. Long and behold, the two of them started talking about the airshow in Geneseo and how great it was.
When we took dad places, we knew it was a day long excursion, as he had to take his time to talk to people, get the butchers to cut his steaks just right, and make little stops here and there.
Dad always said that he was the richest man in the world. Not money-wise, but by the amount of love he had inside him. We could all take a lesson from Larry. Take time to enjoy your family, to talk to people, and look around at all the blessing you have been given.
Friends may call Wednesday from 3-7 PM at the Stephenson-Dougherty Funeral Home 350 Genesee St. Avon, where his Funeral Service will be held Thursday 11 AM. Interment St. Agnes Cemetery, Avon. In Lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the Lions Club of Avon PO Box 293 Avon, NY 14414.