Milestones, Obituaries

LAWRENCE ELOI LECOURS

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Lawrence Eloi LeCours

JERICHO – Lawrence LeCours, 89, passed away peacefully on June 29, with his devoted wife of 59 years, Anita, by his side. Shortly thereafter, his loving family arrived to bid him a beautiful adieu and serenade him into the heavens.

Larry was born in Hardwick, in 1935, the son of Anselme and Violette LeCours. He grew up on the family farm in Hardwick Center along with his 12 brothers and sisters. It was there that he developed his lifelong commitment to excellence, hard work, and getting things done. In his later years, Larry often fondly reminisced about growing up in a large family that was bonded together by love and music.

The first seven years of Larry’s education were spent in a one-room schoolhouse, where Larry selflessly arrived early each day to start the fire in the school’s pot-bellied stove to provide heat for the other students. Larry graduated from Hardwick Academy in 1953, where one of his most treasured memories was being elected class president by his fellow classmates all four years.

After high school, Larry did a two-year tour in the U.S. Army, following which he enrolled at Lyndon State College. Larry had a beautiful baritone voice, and had major roles in many musicals, about which Larry was always very proud. Larry graduated with a BS in education and taught at Lyndon Institute for several years before he received his Master’s Degree from St. Michael’s College and the University of Vermont.

Larry went on to become principal at Richmond High School, and was then hired as the first principal of Mount Mansfield Union High School in 1967. Larry often recalled the excitement and work associated with opening a new school, and the work ethic he developed on the farm came in good stead. His commitment to educating young people continued in South Burlington, where Larry was a presence for over 24 years holding positions of principal at Central School, assistant superintendent, and superintendent. Following his retirement in 1994 from public education, he served as an adjunct professor at St. Michael’s College. Larry was a member of the American Legion, V.F.W. and was a proud fourth-degree member of the Knights of Columbus in Underhill.

While at Lyndon State College, Larry met the love of his life, Anita, and the two married in 1965. Although Larry always considered Hardwick to be his hometown, after marrying Anita, they spent most of his adult life residing on Raceway Road in Jericho, living next door to his brother and best friend, Leo, and his wife, Bonnie, who is also Anita’s only sibling. Leo and Larry met daily at 4 p.m. to discuss the nuances of the day, and the irrevocable bond between the two couples, as well as between their children, cannot be overstated.

Larry spent his retirement years traveling and wintering in sunny Fort Myers Beach, Fla. He and Anita adored their “unit” in Indian Creek Park, frequently entertaining family and friends who loved to visit. Much of Larry’s retirement was consumed by his favorite job: being a Papa. Larry loved attending his grandchildren’s sporting events, driving them to school, and spending quality time with them. They never lacked for love and attention. Larry instilled passion, zest, humility and laughter in all lives he touched.

Larry, or Papa (his favorite title), is survived by his caring wife Anita, his proud son, Scott, and his adoring “little girl,” Amy Tosch, and her husband, Andrew. Papa leaves four idolizing grandchildren: Noah, Zachary, Sadie and Carter. Larry was predeceased by his sister Mignonne, and her husband, Bob LeBlanc; his brothers, Denis, Roger, and Richard; his sisters-in-law Gail, Patricia and Madeleine; and his nephew, Patrick. He is survived by his brothers, Robert, Leo (Bonnie), Michael, and Daniel, and his sisters Annette (Don) Miller, Jacquie (Bob) Borges, Diane (Emile) Fournier, Paulette (Richard) Bessette and sister-in-law, Denise Hark (Denis). While he will be greatly missed by multiple nieces, nephews, friends and colleagues, in Larry’s own words “do not weep for me as I did smell the roses.”

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, August 31, at 10 a.m., at St. Thomas Church in Underhill Center, with a celebration of life immediately following at the On Tap Bar and Grill in Essex Junction. Jokes, laughter, songs and stories are encouraged. Burial will be at the convenience of the family. We wish to thank the staff at The Residence at Quarry Hill, the staff at BAYADA Home Health and Hospice, and all the friends and family who have supported us with kindness, time and support. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donation considerations to The Michael J. Fox Foundation or the Chittenden County Humane Society in his memory.

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