Published: 12:48 pm, Sun. Jan. 3rd, 2016Updated: 12:42 pm
Larry Van Asperen, 80, passed away Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015, at his home in Albuquerque.
Larry was born in Lake Andes, S.D. As a young man, he married Bonnie Jean Lenhart in Pierre, S.D. They were married for more than 25 years until her passing in 1991. Together, they have three children:
Brenda Jo Van Asperen, Lori Jean Sargent and Vicki Ann Gourley.
Larry served in the Army during the Korean War. He also worked in the oil industry in the United States and abroad. He worked for Halliburton, Dowell Schlumberger, and Ladd Petroleum.
Throughout the years, he had many travels. His work in the oilfield took him to Kuwait, Iran, Scotland, Africa and offshore Norway. In Norway, he studied to become a petroleum engineer. After his return to the United States, he worked as a prison guard in Phoenix, Ariz., for a number of years. During his time in the U.S., he lived in Arizona, Kansas, New Mexico, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and Washington.
After Larry’s first wife passed away in 1991, he married his second wife, Sherrie. They spent many years living in Phoenix before deciding to move to Artesia. Larry and Sherrie were greatly involved in the Shriners organization. Together, he and Sherrie have one adopted son, Westin Robert Burns. Larry was blessed with the adoption of Westin in 2008, and Westin was truly the highlight of Larry’s life.
Larry’s hobbies included taking long walks and listening to classic country music. He also loved German chocolate cake and pumpkin pie. Larry was a loving person but was a man of few words. If he liked you, you knew it, because he would talk your legs off. When he smiled, his whole face lit up, and his blue eyes would sparkle. Larry lived a very full, exciting and adventurous life, and I know he is on a new adventure now in heaven.
Survivors include daughters Brenda Jo Van Asperen, Lori Jean Sargent and Vicki Ann Gourley; son Westin Robert Burns; grandchildren Amber Jean Arana, Joshua Cornelius Pollard, Robert John Kalka, Jeremy Van-Micheal Pollard and Lawrance Michael Kalka; and great-grandchildren Kaylee Denae Kalka, Jaydon Michael Burns, Jacelyn Leigh Rodriguez and Serenity Alys Pollard.