Keith Follansbee Bryar II (1958 - 2016)

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MOULTONBOROUGH – Keith Follansbee Bryar II, 57, of Old Mountain Road, died Saturday, February 20, 2016 at the Kaplan Family Hospice House with his loving family by his side.

Keith was born March 3, 1958, in Laconia, the son of the late Keith and Jean (McFarlane) Bryar.

A long-time member of the Lakes Region community, Keith attended the two-room school house in Center Harbor, and graduated with the Inter-Lakes High School class of 1976, where he excelled as class president and a star athlete. Soon after graduation, he made his way to Alaska to kickstart a career in construction.

Upon his return to New Hampshire full-time, he established Bryar Enterprise, a dirt excavation and logging company, which he owned and operated for almost thirty years. He was a talented contractor and machine operator, and masterfully worked on a myriad of projects across the Lakes Region. His work ethic, perfectionism, and leadership by example were well known and an inspiration to many.

His true life passion was raising and racing sled dogs, continuing the family tradition his parents began. At its peak, his Norvik Kennel boasted upwards of 70 world-class racing dogs that went on to win or place at countless races across the United States, including Alaska, and Canada. His crowning achievements came at the World Championship Sled Dog Race in Laconia, which he placed in the top 3 many times and won twice in 2002 and 2011, just months after his cancer diagnosis. He also was the Canadian Sled Dog Champion in 2005, a major accomplishment that celebrated the culmination of his victories across Canada that year. He was an active member and leader in various sled dog clubs across the northeast and beyond, and his encyclopedic knowledge of and passion for sled dog racing nurtured interest and competitive spirit in new and established mushers alike.

Keith was also a devoted father who had tremendous pride for his children. He stressed to them the value of hard work and importance of education, which became major influences in their lives. In recent years he found a second calling in his role of grandfather, and instilled in his grandchildren enough wisdom, love, and joy in their few years with him to last a lifetime.

His charismatic spirit afforded him friends wherever he went. Those who knew him will deeply miss his generosity, compassion, sense of humor, and kindness. He truly was one of a kind.

Keith is survived by his three adoring children with Joan Russell; daughter Julie Porter and her husband Dave of Campbell, Calif., daughter Lindsay Bliznik and her husband Steve of Center Harbor, and son, Andrew Bryar of Chicago, Ill.; three grandchildren, Cooper and Natalie Bliznik, and Bryce Porter; siblings Greg Bryar and his wife Linda of Gilford, and Bonnie Searles and her husband Ron of Rockwood, Maine; and nieces and nephew. He is predeceased by his parents and favorite dog, Goofy.

Calling hours will be held Wednesday, February 24, 2016 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home, 164 Pleasant Street, Laconia, N.H., using the Carriage House entrance.
A funeral service will be held also at Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home, 164 Pleasant Street, Laconia, using the Carriage House entrance, Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 11:00 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Keith F. Bryar II Scholarship Fund, in care of Citizens Bank, 66 NH-25, Meredith, N.H. 03253 or to any CItizens Bank Branch or to support cancer research and patient care at Dana-Farber Cancer, PO Box 849168, Boston, Mass. 02284 or viajimmyfund.org/gift.

Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home and Cremation Services, 164 Pleasant Street, Laconia, N.H. is assisting the family with the arrangements. For more information and to view an online memorial go to wilkinsonbeane.com.
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Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home
164 Pleasant Street
Laconia, NH 03246
(603) 524-4300
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Published in The Concord Monitor on Feb. 23, 2016