Carl La Rue

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LA RUE

Carl Forman



Carl Forman La Rue was born on August 4, 1929. He was the fourth and last child of Evelina Forman and Carl Downey La Rue, a professor of botany at the University of Michigan. Carl spent his childhood hunting, fishing and sailing (in a kayak of his own construction) on the Huron River, which flowed by the family home, fondly referred to as "Herringbone House" because of its unusual stone pattern. He attended the Ann Arbor Public Schools and the Episcopal Church, where he sang in the choir as a boy soprano and was taught to play the organ by the choir master.

His final year of high school and first two of college were spent in Middletown, Connecticut, where he was sent to study piano with John McManus of Wesleyan University. This study was continued at Harvard College, where he worked with A. Tillman Merritt and completed his undergraduate education in 1951. Following the then requisite two years of military service (with the U. S. Army in Newfoundland) and having finally decided that he would never become a truly great concert pianist, Carl attended the Law School of the University of Michigan, from which he graduated in 1957, and began a legal practice in Toledo, first with the firm of Fuller and Henry, next as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and then with the legal staff of Libbey-Owens-Ford Company. Subsequently, he was employed on the legal staff of Armour and Co. (in Chicago) and North-American Rockwell (in Los Angeles), before returning in 1978 to Toledo and his former employer, Libbey-Owens-Ford, as General Counsel, a position which he held until his retirement in 1987. Despite the demands of his position, Carl always found time to play his beloved piano, and once retired, to indulge as well his other interests: gardening, wood-working, tennis and reading.

In 1956, Carl married Jane Stevens Rice, by whom he had two sons, Carl Steven and Edward Rice. This marriage was dissolved in 1970, and in 1971, he married Ann Lindbloom Relyea ,and added her two children, Eric Lindbloom Relyea and Sarah Flemming Relyea to his own two boys. In time there were five granddaughters, Madeline La Rue; daughter, of Steve and his wife Sherry, Caitlin and Britta Relyea, daughters of Eric and his wife Chrisann Bienlein, and Elizabeth (Eliza) and Olivia La Rue, daughters of Edward and his wife Beth.

While at LOF he served on the boards of Planned Parenthood and the Toledo Symphony; those wishing to send contributions in honor of Carl may send them to these organizations.

Carl died after suffering eleven years of dementia, the first seven spent at home with Ann and the last four at Sunset House, where he died on November 20. He and Ann had decided to give their bodies to science at the University of Toledo Medical College, so there was no viewing and no immediate ceremony. After the holidays, the family expects to gather with friends in Carl's piano room to celebrate his life and being.
Published in Toledo Blade on Dec. 8, 2013
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