Lawrence Kenneth Crook, age 84, passed away Friday, October 11, 2019 in Colorado Springs, Colorado surrounded by family. Larry was born on February 4, 1935 to Lawrence Leslie and Sarah Crook in Topeka, Kansas. He grew up in Topeka, attending Topeka High School. While in grade school Larry received increasingly high marks year after year. Larry went on to attend the University of Colorado. While there he earned a bachelor’s in environmental studies, graduating with a 4.0 GPA.
Larry was a vibrant character, and everyone that got to know him fell in love with him. To all the kids, he was the cool dude that everyone looked up to. To the adults, he was wise, caring, and meticulous. To everyone, he was a “MacGyver”; able to fix anything with electrical or duct tape. Larry was an inventor, an organizer, and a tree-hugger.
When the family was younger, he enjoyed taking them camping, fishing, and backpacking. There isn’t much of Colorado that wasn’t explored by Larry and his family. He was an avid horseshoe player, especially with his buddy Jim Eastham. He also enjoyed playing tennis and softball and going on long bike rides.
As his kids grew older, he attended every single sporting event they participated in. He even installed the very first communication system in the Manitou Springs High School football field.
As the kids grew even older, and started out on their own adult journeys, he went to Russia to work. But work does not begin to describe Russia for Larry. He fell madly in love with the people, culture, history and art of Russia. He was there for three years. But while working there, he also got to travel Europe with his wife, Dolly. Together they went on amazing and priceless adventures.
When Larry finally retired, he went on another trip of a lifetime: sea kayaking in Alaska. He paddled with orcas and climbed up glaciers. He even got to go deep sea fishing with his buddy Jim Eastham.
Grandchildren came next, and Larry fell head over heels for them. He polished rocks for them, took them on dates, babysat, played hide-and-seek, or anything else they wanted him to do.
Once Larry settled into retirement, he traveled more, started kayaking, and even drummed with a Native American drumming group. The group loved Larry so much that they made him an honorary member of their tribe, naming him “Silver Fox.”
Larry always put his family and friends first but would do anything for anyone. He never spoke an unkind word and was always willing to lend an ear. His generous and loving heart drew everyone to him, especially the down and brokenhearted.
Larry left a legacy of kindness and acceptance that his family and friends will always love and thank him for. He will be missed greatly by all those who knew him.
He is preceded in death by his parents and one brother Ted Crook.
Larry is survived by wife Dolly Crook of Colorado Springs; his children Ken Crook and his wife Tammy Crook Pueblo West, Kathy Trautner and her husband Craig of Colorado Springs, Chad Crook and his wife Andrea of Colorado Springs;
his Grandchildren Brandi Crook, Joshua Crook, Callie Trautner, Megan Crook, Sidney Crook, Noah Trautner, Reece Crook, all Colorado Springs; Greatgrandchildren Jocelyn Crook and Justice Kelly; Brothers and Sisters Jeanette Hampton and her husband Newell of Montrose, Colorado, Marge Kramer and her husband Jack of Topeka, Kansas, Merle Crook and his wife Jimilee of Lancaster, South Carolina, Nancy Rosa and her husband Dean of Missouri, Jeanie DeWitt and her husband Doug of Topeka, Kansas, and his sister Kim Taylor of Topeka, Kansas; many other family and friends.
The family wishes to convey a very special Thank You to the amazing doctors and nurses that made up Larry’s care team at Memorial Hospital Central. You were gentle, caring, and very attentive. The family appreciates the wonderful care you gave him.
Friends & Family Visitation will be held Friday, October 18, 2019 at the Return to Nature Funeral Home, 815 East Platte Avenue from 4:00pm to 7:00pm.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held at 11:00am Saturday, October 19, 2019 at the Return to Nature Chapel West / Cowboys for Jesus Church, 11 North 22nd Street, Colorado Springs, Colorado, with military honors. A lunch reception will follow services there at the service location.
Service arrangements are under the direction of Return to Nature Funeral Home, Colorado Springs – Penrose, Colorado