No doubt many who write on these pages knew Larry longer than I but I dare say no one felt closer. That’s because that is who Larry was. If he was your friend, you became his best friend. And he had hundreds upon hundreds of best friends rippling across the globe. Larry and I first got to know each other well in the summer of 2008 when I was involved with the Obama campaign and Joe Biden had just been selected to join the ticket as VP. Two rival campaigns coming together is not as seamless as one may think. Bruised feelings must be assuaged and egos managed. When I walked into that first unity meeting I stuck out my hand to greet Larry who responded by giving me a big hug. There were no ego issues or power trips; all Larry cared about was winning the election—for the good of the country. That’s when I first knew this was a special man whom I quickly would come to love.
In a short time our relationship, ignited by spontaneous combustion, grew beyond Bob and Larry to include Kim and Carolyn and of course Will. Larry always remained on the lookout for connections both professionally and personally. If there was a business opportunity, Larry was the first to call. It seemed that there wasn’t a person in the city, or the country, that he didn’t know. When he heard that friends of his, the Tovin’s, were moving into the building where we lived, he arranged a 6 way dinner—not just an introduction but a dinner so that a level of comfort would be established immediately. And it worked since Hal and Lisa did indeed become close friends. Another ripple.
In 2010, I got a got one of the stranger phone calls (believe me there were others! )I ever received from Larry. He began: “have you and your son ever watched the movie Caddyshack together?” It seems that in Larry’s mind this movie was a quintessential father-son right of passage. So Larry arranged a private room in the Palm, secured a private copy of the film, brought in two of the supporting actors from the film and showed the move to 15 or so father and son pairings, including my son Matt and me, and Larry and Will. Occasionally, he would stop the film and have the actors give color commentary on what was happening behind the scenes. The night was full of great food, laughter, and father-son bonding. And Larry had a smile on his face the whole time. Mission accomplished!
As I write this, tears well up in my eyes since I think of a hundred more memories of Larry or acts of kindness by him. He was larger than life in so many ways. There is not a day that will go by where I won’t miss him. Knowing him has made me a better person. Rest In Peace my dear friend. Your spirit will ripple on forever. I love you.