Larry Gene Melton, Sr. left this life on Friday, Aug. 12, at Christus St. Elizabeth Hospital, surrounded by his family after a truly courageous battle with cancer. Given only 6 months to live in Dec. 2006, he exhibited the ‘Larry Melton’ determination and will by defying the odds—even driving and mowing the lawn up until a few weeks prior to his death.

Larry was born on April 25, 1936 in Linden, Texas to Rose and James Thomas Melton, Sr. The family moved to Orange in 1953 and Larry graduated from Little Cypress High School after establishing himself as an accomplished athlete. He held various jobs before landing his dream job as an engineer for IBM. It was at IBM that he met Sandra Smith who he eventually married. Larry was proud of and excelled at his profession being called all over the world to fix problems requiring his expertise. He retired from IBM and spent the next 20 years pursuing his interests in golf, hunting, fishing and skeet shooting.

Whatever Larry undertook he did so with zeal and passion and his hobbies were no different. He and Sandy rebuilt a home in Labelle which he took great pride in and loved. He wrote reviews of golf courses across the country for a golf magazine and also traveled many times to Colorado and New Mexico hunting. He had many opportunities in life that few enjoy and his family will treasure the many stories he loved to tell of his travels.

Larry was preceded in death by his parents, Rose and J.T. Melton, Sr.; his brother, James Thomas Melton Jr.; his sister, Roberta Kilcrest, and his father-in-law, Floyd Smith.

He is survived by his wife, Sandra Melton; his children from his first marriage, Lauryi (Kevin) Knowles, Sue (Michael) Landry and Larry Melton Jr.; sister, Linda (James) Rountree; his grandchildren, Garrett (Jessica) Robbins, Jon (Amy) Knowles, Shonda (Jeff Wallace) Robbins, Taylor Melton and Callie Melton and his great-granddaughter, Ava Hope Robbins.

A visitation of family and friends will occur on Monday, Aug. 15, from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm at Forest Lawn Funeral Home with the funeral being held on Tuesday, Aug. 16, at 10:00 am at Forest Lawn. Burial will follow at Magnolia Cemetery.

Pallbearers are Kevin Knowles, Michael Landry, Billy Horelica, John Donaho, Gerry Block, Kip Glasscock, George Solleder and Loran Bosarge. Memorial contributions may be made to the Beaumont Chapter of the American Cancer Society.

The family wishes to express their sincerest gratitude to Scott McKenney, M.D., George Thomas, M.D., and the wonderful staff at Christus St. Elizabeth Hospital Oncology Unit 4 Southwest for the compassion, care and comfort provided during Larry’s lengthy illness.

Larry was a larger than life personality and he will be missed.