Larry Tharnish, 78, of Des Moines died peacefully surrounded by family on February 15, 2013.
Larry was born in Des Moines, Iowa to Anna and Peter Tharnish. He married Ann Lawdahl, and enjoyed over fifty-seven wonderful years of marriage. The 'Blonde Bomber' was a member of the Dowling High School class of 1952, where he participated in baseball, football, and basketball, and perfected his famous hook shot. He then attended the University of Iowa. He worked for Anderson Erickson Dairy until 1989 and for the Meredith Family until 2007.
Larry "Pipper" is survived by his wife, Ann, three daughters, Deb (Nick Roby) Tharnish, Barb (John) King, and Laura (Kraig) Pyer. He was an involved, fun-loving grandpa to Tom, Ted, and Annie Craig; Allison (Kyle) Nielsen; Ben (Caely), Michael and Nathan Roby; and Jacob and Sam King. PomPom was his family's biggest and most loyal fan- attending nearly all of their numerous concerts, plays, sporting events, and graduation ceremonies. He was there as support for the smallest and the biggest moments in all of their lives.
Larry was preceded in death by his parents; sisters, Margaret and Bernadette Tharnish, Lucile Glas, Rose Whitehead, Ruby Griffin, and Anna Mae Brunk; and brother, Pete Tharnish.
Larry was also fortunate to have several life-long friends who meant the world to him.
Larry enjoyed spending time with his family, traveling everywhere from exotic locations to local spots, driving his pontoon boat up to five miles an hour at Big Creek (NO WAKE!), bird watching, pulling the slots at Prairie Meadows, attending the annual Tharnish Family Reunion, and cheering on the San Francisco Giants, the Iowa State Cyclones, and the Hoover Huskies. Larry's faith was extremely important to him, and he lived his faith in everyday life.
The family will greet friends and relatives at Iles Funeral Homes - Westover Chapel from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, February 20, 2013 with a prayer service following at 7 p.m. A funeral mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Thursday, February 21, 2013, at St. Mary of Nazareth Catholic Church.
Memorial contributions may be made in Larry's honor to Hawthorn Hill/New Directions Shelter; Catholic Charities/St. Mary Family Center; or Food Bank of Iowa.
Published in Des Moines Register from February 18 to February 20, 2013