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Peter L. Lassen

1939 - 2018 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Peter L. Lassen Obituary
August 22, 1939 - August 8, 2018 Elysian Park has lost its mightiest Oak. A good friend of the park and a longtime resident of Echo Park, Peter Lorentz Lassen, passed away peacefully in his sleep on August 8th, just days short of his 79th birthday. A neighborhood fixture, and a champion of good causes, Peter will be remembered by all who knew him for his broad smile and hearty laughter. His list of committees and community commitments was exhaustive. Born August 22nd, 1939 at Good Samaritan Hospital, of Danish descent, Peter was a native Angeleno, and spent most of his life here, after graduating from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. In the 1960s, while serving in the U.S. Army, Peter sustained a lower spinal cord injury thus making him a paraplegic. After his convalescence, he relocated to Washington D.C., taking a job as executive director of the Paralyzed Veterans of America, where he continued to advocate for people with disabilities, and worked for the Veterans Administration, developing accessibility standards for all. Peter Lassen helped draft the Americans with Disabilities Act. This led to his studying architecture, receiving a Master's degree in architecture from the University of North Carolina, Raleigh. Returning to Los Angeles, in the 1980s, Peter set about solving every problem he saw, developing housing for the homeless, working with the L.A. Conservation Corps to plant over 15,000 trees all over Los Angeles, with at risk youth, serving as a member of the Steering Committee of the Citizens Committee to Save Elysian Park, teaching Handicapped Accessibility in the Landscape Architecture Program at UCLA Extension, and serving on committees too numerous to mention. Peter was also a marathon runner, who worked out in the Dodger Stadium parking lot, using his wheelchair in 40-plus marathons all over the country. Peter was an architect, an artist, a patron of Arts, a neighborhood ambassador, and pillar of his beloved Elysian Park community. He is survived by his brother, Eric Lassen of Santa Barbara, his sister Karen Lassen of Berkeley, as well as his niece Susie Lassen, nephew Christopher Lassen and grandniece Ashley Varga. A memorial for Peter Lassen will be held Tuesday, September 4th from 5-8 pm at the Grace E. Simons Lodge, in Elysian Park. In the spirit of Peter's love of diverse cuisines, friendship and community this event is a potluck dinner. Please bring a tasty dish Peter would have enjoyed. Beverages will be provided. For more information, please contact Matt Chesse? at [email protected]
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Aug. 25 to Aug. 26, 2018
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