Lawrence Gene “Larry” Avery, 71, passed away on Tuesday, March 6, 2018, in Salinas, CA. Larry was born on July 14, 1946, in Fresno, CA.
After graduating from from San Joaquin Memorial High School in 1964, Larry was drafted into the United States Army where he served two tours in Vietnam in the 1st Air Cavalry and the 82nd Airborne divisions. After returning from the war, he married Rosalie, his wife of 48 years, in 1970.
He earned a degree in Criminology from Fresno State before beginning his career in law enforcement. He served 30 years with the Clovis Police Department, where he achieved the rank of Sergeant while leaving a lasting legacy.
Larry’s Christian faith and family were above all else in his life. He enjoyed hunting and fishing with his friends and sons in the western United States, Canada, and Mexico. In his spare time he was an avid artist and enjoyed playing chess. Described by colleagues as a “true patriot” and “dedicated public servant,” Larry was a stranger to no one with his larger-than-life personality leaving a lasting impression on those he befriended, worked with, and even met briefly.
Larry was preceded in death by his parents, Lavina Nunnelee, and Glover Avery. Larry is survived by his wife Rosalie; sons, Michael, Paul, and Nicholas; daughter-in-law Megan; grandson Dominic; twin sister, Laura Camara and her husband Joe; sisters, Barbara Meler, and Betty Wood; step-father, Ken Nunnelee; and many beloved nieces, nephews, and cousins. He is also survived by his lifelong best friend and “brother,” Frank Dalena.
“Larry was a dedicated public servant. He was missed when he left the [Clovis Police] Department and he will be missed more now that he’s not with us,” said councilmember Drew Bessinger, a former colleague of Larry during his time with Clovis PD.
A Memorial Service for Larry will be held at New Covenant Church, 1744 E. Nees Avenue, Fresno at 11 a.m. on Monday, March 19. A reception, which will include a military Honor Guard ceremony and reception, will follow at Clovis Veterans Memorial District, 808 4th Street in Clovis.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to your local Veterans Affairs, www.volunteer.va.gov/apps/VolunteerNow/