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Life Story / Obituary
Although Lawrence Mroczka experienced so many things that greatly enriched his life’s journey, there was nothing that he cherished more than being surrounded by the love of his family. His devotion to his wife and children was unmatched, and family times only became more treasured when grandchildren arrived. Larry was a hardworking man of great character and high moral integrity that were such an inspiration to those around him. Larry will be deeply missed while his memory remains forever near and dear to the hearts and lives of all who were blessed to know and love him.
The vibrant days of the 1950s were unlike any other generation in American history. The days of the Great Depression and WWII were in our rear view mirror, and prosperity was a reality for numerous Americans once again. Televisions were becoming part of our homes like never before, and with our introduction to television shows like Father Knows Best the way we saw ourselves was never the same. Amidst this colorful time was the year 1953 that was filled with great joy for a young couple from Detroit, Michigan, as they were pleased to announce the birth of their healthy baby boy on January 21st. Lawrence was one of three children born to his parents, Frank and Phyllis Mroczka, and he was raised in the family home alongside his siblings Joan and Frank.
In many ways Larry experienced an upbringing that was a reflection of the times. He enjoyed sports and could often be found playing street hockey with friends, but they had to play near the street light so they could see the puck. They never worried too much about getting yelled at by the neighbor, which happened regularly, and just had a good time. Larry also walked to school to play basketball with his buddies and enjoyed playing cards on the porch. He attended local schools and loved playing basketball as a student at St. Hedwig High School. Larry started working at a young age cutting neighborhood lawns to earn some candy money. He later earned enough to purchase the Chevy Nova that he was always so proud of.
Not to be forgotten during Larry’s years in high school was his introduction to the young girl with whom he would write a love story that would span more than 40 years. Her name was Kathy, and they met in 10th grade religion class. They were smitten with one another and left each other daily love notes inside a desk that only the two of them knew about. Amazingly, they never got caught! Larry used to tell his mother that he was going to the library, when he was actually going to drive by Kathy’s house to yell out her name as he went by. Needless to say, this didn’t sit so well with Kathy’s father. After graduating from high school, Larry went on to earn his trade school certificate.
With a desire to spend the rest of their lives together, Larry and Kathy became husband and wife in St. Stephen’s Church in Detroit. They were married for only about a year when he convinced her to just “go look” at the puppies at their local humane society. Kathy knew there was no such thing as just looking, so when they came home with a puppy it was no surprise to her. The young couple happily made room for their new puppy, Cocoa, but the puppy was a little uneasy and he wouldn’t eat once they got home. Always one to think on his feet, Larry went to Bray’s and got Cocoa some hamburgers - and the dog was cured!
Together Larry and Kathy were thrilled to welcome three children into their hearts and home: Kimberly, Kevin, and Jeffrey. Larry took his role as the provider in his family to heart and always worked hard no matter what kinds of personal sacrifices that meant he had to make. He savored every minute he had to spend with the family and treasured every family vacation they took. Larry especially loved going to Mackinaw City as the sights of the Mackinac Bridge, and the sounds and smells really gave him a chance to get away from the stress and truly relax. Frankenmuth was another favorite destination, especially birthday dinners at Zehnder's and stopping by Bronner's where Kathy would shop and Larry would read the newspaper. As his children grew older and established families of their own, Larry loved becoming a grandfather to Brenden, Dylan, Katelyn, and Dominic. He looked forward to hosting the family every year for Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. These were fun and crazy times, which meant that Larry also appreciated the calm and quiet when everyone went back home. In fact, he used to joke, “Quick! Lock the door so they can’t come back.” Of course, in reality he loved every minute they were there. Larry used to call Kathy "Little Cimba" and later was famous for saying to her, “Hey good lookin'!” He had nicknames for everyone such as The Kevster, Mr. B and “sonny boy.” He was there for his sons’ high school football games whenever he could be, and more recently his grandson’s high school football games as well. A sports enthusiast, Larry also enjoyed professional football, NASCAR, and Major League Baseball, especially the Detroit Tigers.
All who knew Lawrence Mroczka would agree that he was an extraordinary man to know and love. He worked hard, but he played hard too. At times, he was still just a kid at heart. Larry will be missed for his fun-loving personality, his contagious zest for life, and his dedication to the people and things he was passionate about, but most of all he will be missed for his uncompromising love. He will never be forgotten.
Lawrence Mroczka died on October 1, 2014. Larry’s family includes his wife, Kathy; children, Kimberly (Donald) Barduca, Kevin, and Jeffrey; grandchildren, Brenden, Dylan, Katelyn, and Dominic; siblings, Joan Mendoza and Frank (Mary). Visitation will be held on Friday, 3-9 p.m. at Neely-Turowski Life Story Funeral Home, 45100 Warren (West of Sheldon). Instate on Saturday, 10 a.m. until mass at 10:30 at St. John Neumann Catholic Church (Warren, West of Sheldon). Interment St. Hedwig Cemetery. You may sign the guest book at www.TurowskiLifeStory.com.