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From Jess O'Connor

Laurier James “Larry” Lessard Sr., 86, Scio


Laurier James “Larry” Lessard Sr, 86, a lifelong resident of Scio, NY, passed away on July 20, 2023. His family was blessed to be able to share with him over his last hours how very loved he truly was.

Larry was born in Plattsburgh, NY on October 13, 1936 and spent his childhood in Scio, NY, where he enjoyed spending his time hunting, fishing, playing sports, and causing general mischief alongside his brother. After serving four years as a Hospital Corpsman in the US Navy, stationed primarily at Camp Lejeune and the Philippines (a place to which he vowed never to return), Larry returned home to Scio to begin his career. He ultimately spent the vast majority of his career working as an Industrial Engineer with Dresser Rand in Wellsville, NY, retiring after more than 30 years in 1999.

Larry married the love of his life, Juel Carter, on May 20,1961. He knew he struck gold with his “Bubba”, as she was the only woman who could not only put up with him, but also bring out his best. They spent 40 happy years together, raising and delighting in their four children. The loss of his wife was a grief he carried with him every day of his remaining years and there is no doubt he is overjoyed at being reunited with her after 20 years apart.

Larry was very active in the community over the years, having served as a volunteer fireman, a founding member of the Scio chapter of the Lion’s Club, and a longtime congregant of St Joseph’s Church. He also served as Scio Town Justice and as a member of the Scio Central School Board. His final act as a school board member was handing a diploma to his youngest daughter Julie, a special moment for them both.

Larry was a Buffalo Bills fan and an active collector and hobbyist. Over the years he accumulated vast collections of innumerable items including coins, antique furniture, beer steins, Occupied Japan figurines, antique piggy banks, and most especially antique wall clocks, which he delighted in fixing and displaying. His grandson Zach once counted well over 100 wall clocks running throughout his house. Once a topic of great teasing by his family, his children and grandchildren are fortunate to each have at least one of those clocks proudly displayed and keeping time in their own homes. He also planted more varieties of hostas in his backyard than one could reasonably count. He was a candy enthusiast, having jars of the stuff within reach throughout his home. He detested getting lost while driving, sitcoms, mayonnaise, wobbly wooden handled forks (which Juel later admitted to intentionally setting by his plate regularly just to see his reaction), meat that tasted like rubber, and having two jars of mustard open at once in the refrigerator. There was no rationalizing with him about any of these things. He loved his family, Scio, his friends, peppermint stick ice cream, sardines, Genesee Cream Ale, cats, eBay, and nature shows.

Above all else, Larry was a family man. He was old school, with his gruff exterior but soft heart. He will be remembered by his family as a devoted husband, a strong and generous father figure, and he has left us with countless funny memories to comfort us in our grief. In addition, Larry was a friend to many and will be missed by all who knew him.

He is survived by his children Jeff (Kelly) Lessard of Georgetown, TX, Michelle (Mark) Forbes of Rochester, NY, Jim (Valerie) Lessard of Rochester, NY, and Julie (Brett) Anderson of Austin, TX, his sister Bev (Maurice) Gilman of Weatherford, TX, sister-in-law Edna Lessard, grandchildren Danielle (Mike) Joannides, Alex Lessard, Amanda Lessard, Zachary Lessard, and Sam Lessard, and great-grandchild Hope Joannides.

 Larry was predeceased by his beloved wife of 40 years, Juel Lessard, his parents Laurier S. & Ida Lessard, and his brother and sister-in-law Paul & Edna Lessard.

Visitation will be held on Saturday, August 12, 2023, from 10 am to 12 pm at the J.W. Embser Sons Funeral Home of Wellsville, 34 West State Street. A memorial service will immediately follow at 12 noon in the funeral home.

Friends are invited to join the family for a reception, held at the American Legion of Wellsville, 23 Jefferson Street. In lieu of flowers, please consider memorial donations to the American Parkinson Disease Association, PO Box 61420, Staten Island, NY 10306.

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