Date Of BirthMar-29-1939
Date of deathMay-22-2018
A funeral to celebrate his life will be Wednesday, May 30, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, IL 60119. at 11:30 a.m., with a time of visitation from 10:30-11:30 a.m. Rev. Katherine Lawes will officiate.
Visitation will be from 4-8 p.m., Tuesday, May 29, 2018, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, IL 60119.
Interment to follow at Blackberry Twp. Cemetery,
Larry Cornell, age 79, of Elburn, passed away peacefully, surrounded by the love and support of his family, in the early morning hours of Tuesday, May 22, 2018 at Delnor Hospital, Geneva, IL. He was born March 29, 1939, in Bertha, MN, to proud parents, Alvah and Esther (Nelson) Cornell. Larry grew up in Bertha, MN and attended the local school. Along the way, he delivered newspapers for the Minneapolis Star Newspaper for many years and hocked pop at the local high school games, but all the money went into savings. His parents owned a local grocery store, so Larry also spent time making deliveries and announcing new deals and produce for the Sunshine Grocery. He graduated from Bertha-Hewitt High School with the class of 1957. The bonds he made during this time would last a lifetime. Even into his last days, he kept in touch with many of classmates. He also made his presence known in the band, playing the French Horn and also sang in the choir. Larry took all the money he saved and purchased his first Semi-truck so he could continue his passion as a truck driver. That passion would last his whole life long until declining health reluctantly took him from the driver’s seat. Larry began his career with Raymond Brothers, but added Berger and Blodgett in Minneapolis before moving the family to Elburn in 1966 to begin working for St. Charles Kitchens. He would spend nineteen years there, but later, he worked for Stover’s Brothers Trucking, Nagel Siebert Trucking, as well as the Elburn Co-op. Crown Lawn Care was born in between driving across the country. In recent years, Larry became an independent fifth-wheel trailer hauler, making trips from the manufacturer in Indiana, to all parts of the country. Before he turned in his keys, Larry logged over a million miles and never listened to a minute of music; only talk radio was played in his cab. Larry could easily have been the first GPS as he knew how to get literally everywhere. His second profession was that of a vaunted weather man. Larry was quick to call everyone he knew with as many updates as was necessary until each storm passed and he knew they were safe. No conversation ever ended without multiple “okay’s” and a promise that you could call him at any hour because “time didn’t matter”. He had a faith that weathered many a storm, but it grew more in later years when he returned faithfully to church. Larry was a member of the Teamsters Union and volunteered many many years at the Elburn Lions Club. He also belonged to Brothers of America. Larry lived his life, his way, period, end of sentence. He was a believer in the adage of “Do as I say, not as I do” and lived his life with his heart on his sleeve (crying at many commercials). A familiar refrain was “Family has no boundaries and is bound not by blood but by love”. Although he was quick to love, people knew to “beware the wrath of Larry”. He was the most loyal man you would ever meet, sometimes to a fault. He supported any cause that came his way with a donation and had a sleeve of rubber bracelets from various fundraisers for friends, family and strangers alike. As a child of the WWII era, nothing was wasted. Ever. Whether it was a lonely broken tarp strap on the side of the road or truck bumpers and mud flaps to everything in between, Larry would turn around or go the extra mile to save all he could. As a young man, Larry’s dance moves always garnered attention (as well as a few phone numbers), but gave his heart and hand in marriage “to only” three women. He said he loved being married so much, he did it three times. Larry was a self-proclaimed Duct Tape King, using it often and generously when he did. Larry loved to fish, which may have come from his Swedish/ Norwegian ancestry. He cast his line anytime and anywhere he could, especially back in his home state of Minnesota. Many winters he travelled West to go snowmobiling in Yellowstone. Each trip was made in the company of many friends. Popcorn was a staple and was often not only a mainstay, but also the main course of many a meal. Football was destination viewing for Larry and although he grew up a Viking, he converted to the Bears when he moved to IL. He also enjoyed the World Series run of the Chicago Cubs. NASCAR and Jeff Gordon called to him like no other, leading him to every race he could attend which was often in Las Vegas. He stayed in his fifth wheel trailer, at the center of the circle. Larry was a part of so many lives, the connections are limitless. He will be missed by countless friends and family across the country. He is survived by two children: Bradley (Debra) Cornell and Elizabeth “Beth” (Curt) Meredith; one step-daughter, Shanna (J.R.) Brewer-Valdez; two step-sons: Steven (Lori) Brewer and Scott Brewer; four grandchildren: Jason (Jaclyn) Cornell and their children, Noah, Caleb, Liam and Graham; Chris (Jen) Cornell and their children: Landon and Logan; Angie (Eric) Hren and Madeline (Arturo) Martinez Jr. and their children: Ricky, Priscilla and soon to join us, Nathaniel; five step-grandchildren: D’Andre Quick, Charlie Valdez III and Henna Valdez, Cheyann and Kelsey Brewer; one sister, Kathryn Pfeffer; one sister-in-law, Diane Cornell; a host of nieces, nephews and friends from sea to sea. He is preceded in death by his parents Alvah and Esther Cornell; one brother Alan “Corky” Cornell and a daughter in infancy, Theresa Jean Cornell. Visitation will be from 4-8 p.m., Tuesday, May 29, 2018, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, IL 60119. A funeral to celebrate his life will be Wednesday, May 30, also at the funeral home, at 11:30 a.m., with a time of visitation from 10:30-11:30 a.m. Rev. Katherine Lawes will officiate with interment to follow at Blackberry Twp. Cemetery, Elburn. In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in Larry’s name to benefit his favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Larry Cornell Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address, the Conley Funeral Home Facebook Page, or at www.conleycare.com where you can find his full life story.