Larry D. Purcell, 66, of Missouri City, Texas passed away on November 18, 2011. Larry was born February 1, 1945, in Cheyenne, Wyoming to Lawrence and Ruth Purcell. He spent his early years in Webb City, Missouri, and graduated in 1963 from Alba High School, Alba, Missouri. In 1965 he married Marilyn Sue Allen of Joplin, Missouri. They had one daughter, Nichole Purcell, born in 1972. Leawood, Missouri, a suburb of Joplin, honored Larry by electing him mayor for two terms. The Purcells attended Byers Avenue Methodist Church in Joplin.
Larry worked for Gulf Oil until 1982 when he accepted a position with the Coca Cola Bottling Company in Houston, Texas. Larry, Marilyn, and Niki moved to Missouri City, Texas which became their home for 29 years. Larry went on to work for Coca Cola Enterprises as Risk Manager for the Central Division of the United States until he retired in 2001 after 22 years of service.
Larry coached his daughter’s softball teams for eleven years taking the girls to State tournaments several times. His coaching began in Joplin and continued in Missouri City. He served as president of Sta-Mo Girls Soft-Ball League and on the Board of Directors.
An active member of Southminster Presbyterian Church in Missouri City Larry served as deacon, elder, and Stephen Minister. He initiated and led the Alpha Program, was a Christ Care small group leader, and served faithfully on many committees at the church. He also served as a substitute teacher at Southminster School. His dedicated service came from the conviction of his words, “You may be the only Bible people read today.”
Larry’s literary career began after retirement. Inspired by his granddaughters, Danielle and Victoria Hertel, he wrote the “Lady Bug” series. He published three books entitled “Two Little Lady Bugs,” “Lady Bug Picnic,” and “The Lady Bug and The Talking Stone.” A fourth book is in publication called “Lady Bugs are Siblings Too.” As well as his writing ability Larry was gifted and enjoyed drawing, painting, and stained glass.
He is survived by his wife, Marilyn, of 46 years, his daughter, Nichole Hertel, two granddaughters, Danni and Tori, of Missouri City, Texas, a brother and wife, Ron and Beverly Purcell of Webb City, Missouri, and many family members and faithful friends.
A Memorial Service was held at Southminster Presbyterian Church, November 26, 2011, to honor his life, his accomplishments, and his faithfulness.
Contributions in memory of Larry Purcell may be made to Southminster School, 4200 Cartwright Road, Missouri City, Texas 77459.