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Larry Donald Woodruff October 1, 1939 - February 3, 2024

Larry Donald Woodruff, born October 1, 1939, passed away peacefully on February 3, 2024, surrounded by his wife and kids, who adored him and filled his life with love and laughter.  He lived a full and rich life, with unique opportunities.  From working on the White Sands missile range on the Athena rocket precursor to playing semi-professional basketball in Germany to being drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates as a pitcher to receiving professional recognition in hospital administration, all the while rebuilding and drag racing classic muscle cars and coaching his kids’ sports teams, Larry’s life had real range.

Larry was, at his core, a small-town country boy, a product of his upbringing in rural Colorado and New Mexico.  He had a lifelong love of Louis L’Amour western novels and southwest Native American artwork and culture.  As a child, he was a crack shot with a rifle and rid many a farmer’s field of vermin jack rabbits and snakes.  He also demonstrated as a young child that he was a sports enthusiast.  Larry never met a sport he didn’t like and excelled at most (except skiing).  As a high school student, he was the consummate scholar athlete, starring on his school’s basketball and baseball teams.

After high school, Larry served as a full-time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Central German Mission for 2.5 years, where he connected with his family heritage (his German grandparents spoke German to him as a child).  He was recruited to play basketball on a semi-pro team, and with his Mission President’s permission, he spread the gospel of Jesus Christ through dazzling ball skills, blazing court speed, and old school hook shots.  After completing his mission, he finished a bachelor’s degree in political science with a mathematics minor at Brigham Young University.

After working as a financial analyst at GE in New Jersey and California, he later returned to BYU to earn a Master’s in Public Administration with a focus on healthcare finance.  Larry met people during this time that influenced the rest of his life, most importantly was the love of his life, Janice Lorraine Hart, who was quickly won over by Larry’s dashing smile and sleek convertible.  The two were married in the Oakland LDS Temple on June 22, 1971.

After short stints in California and Arizona, Larry accepted a job in the Seattle area.  Larry and Janice spent the next phase of life in Seattle and southern Oregon raising their five beautiful kids: Sarena, Tyson, Kyle, Todd, and Alyson.  Larry was the epitome of the devoted father, coaching them in every sport, teaching them about the joys of yard work, and helping them with their math homework, much to their dismay.  His kids were a high priority: he rarely missed a sports game, a dance or chorus recital, an awards night, a school event, or any endeavor that involved his kids.  He took them on road trips, introduced them to his myriad scrambled egg concoctions, lovingly dominated them in Hearts and ping pong, and regularly treated them to movies and home-made milkshakes.

Larry was nearly superhuman in his energy level.  It took until he was in his late fifties until his kids could regularly beat him at one-on-one basketball.  Even in his early 60s, he conquered unrestored sections of China’s Great Wall and Yellow Mountain, which is known for its sheer cliffs.  As he slowed down, Larry found joy in his wife and family (which includes 20 grandchildren), Tai Chi, action movies, and books.  Larry will be remembered fondly and missed greatly by all who knew him.

Family and friends are invited to gather at 9:45 a.m. on Saturday, February 10th, at Walker Funeral Home, 187 South Main Street, Spanish Fork, UT preceding funeral services at the same place beginning at 11:00 a.m.. Burial services will immediately follow.

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Visitation

Saturday, February 10, 2024

9:45-10:45 a.m.

Walker Funeral Home

187 South Main Street,

Spanish Fork, Utah

MAP

Funeral Service

Saturday, February 10, 2024

11:00 a.m.

Walker Funeral Home

187 South Main Street,

Spanish Fork, Utah

MAP

Interment

Salem Cemetery

130 East 965 South,

Salem, Utah

MAP

 

 

 

Condolences(5)

  1. REPLY
    Tammy Larson says

    I have the privilege to serve with Larry’s daughter Sarena every week in the temple and can see the light of his influence in her life. Dad’s hold special places in a daughter’s heart and Sarena dearly loves him. Peace to Larry’s family and may each of you feel the embrace of the Comforter during a most tender part of life’s journey.

  2. REPLY
    Lisa Lee says

    So sorry about losing your Dad.

    • REPLY
      Karen Fife says

      Sarena, so sorry for your loss. Praying for you and your family.

  3. REPLY
    Travis Gunnell says

    Sarena, My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time. I so enjoyed reading about your father! I am grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ. I love the knowledge that he is a better place continuing his work and reuniting with those that have gone before him.

  4. REPLY
    Billie Jean Pew says

    I also serve with Serena in the Gilbert temple. Sarena sending you my love and prayers. It is difficult to be separated from someone we love. May you feel His peace and love for you and your family.

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Spanish Fork
(801) 798-2169
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(801) 465-3846