The last few days, I’ve been in San Diego. My good friend and former college roomate, Larry Mahlum, died. He had colotis which developed into colon cancer and matastasized throughout his body. I got to talk with him, briefly, before he died. His father contacted me about a Memorial Service for Larry at the University of San Diego. I flew out and joined his family.
Larry’s memorial service was very nice. Joe Tokarz, a friend of Larry and mine from the Marine Corps ROTC at UT, sent a framed picture of Larry in his dress whites. It was beautiful and was front and center at the reception. Everyone there wanted to know what Larry was like in his earlier days. It was nice to meet so many people who dearly loved him. There were a few people who spoke at the reception and during the service. I was one of them. Below is what I said:
Larry has been my friend for a long time. He has seen too much of my life. And in his quiet way, thank heavens he didn’t get me on the Jerry Springer show.
I met him in the Marine Corps ROTC. He was a very determined and focused individual. He had a clear mind of what was right and wrong. He would hang back and help others rather than push for the top spot. He encouraged those around him, and they loved him and excelled because of his care and respect.
After which, we were roommates (me, him, and a 7 ft long snake). He was with me through my ups and downs (an ex-fiance, my wedding, then children). And when my wife was being treated for cancer in Houston, he was the quiet companion we could handle seeing.
When we moved across the pond to England, Larry shortly followed with a visit while studying abroad. As usual, his time with us was very easy and relaxed.
My children love and call him uncle (especially when they are pirate fighting). My wife loves him like a brother. And me, he was much more. He was my quiet hero.
I wish I could also include the writings of what others said, but I thought the above would be nice to share.