Lawrence G. Burwinkel
November 28, 1926 - October 12, 2022
Visitation: Sunday 2-4 p.m.; Devlin Funeral Home, Inc., Ross Twp.
Service: Mass of Christian Burial in St. Martha and Mary Parish, St. Richard Church, Monday, 10:00 a.m.
Lawrence (Larry) George Burwinkel Jr., age 95, passed away peacefully surrounded by loved ones on Wednesday October 12, 2022. Larry, the oldest of three boys was born in Cincinnati, OH, on November 28, 1926, to Lawrence and Grace Burwinkel.
He is preceded in death by his parents, loving wife of 62 years Maura (Derfler) and brother Jack, his wife Lois, brother Ken and his wife Carol. He is survived by his six children: Jeff and wife Lynn Loughney, Maura Counahan (Paul deceased), Karen Shepherd, David and his wife Lisa, Barbara Mucci and her husband Jeff, Lisa Donevant and her husband Len,15 grandchildren, 5 great grandchildren and by many loving friends and relatives.
Larry spent the early years of his life in Cincinnati before his father’s work brought the family to Pittsburgh, PA. There he completed grade school at Saint Philomena’s and graduated from Central Catholic High School in June,1944. The following week he began his college studies at the University of Pittsburgh but after his first year joined the Army Air Corps in June,1945. He reached the rank of Sergeant, receiving commendation for his work with the Medical Corpsman School. Upon his discharge in November,1946 he returned to the University of Pittsburgh to finish his studies, graduating in 1949 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics. While at Pitt, Larry was President of his Phi Kappa fraternity chapter and a varsity cheerleader.
After graduation, Larry pursued a career in marketing and sales, joining Pennsylvania Glass Sand (PGS) Corporation (a subsidiary of ITT). During his 47-year career with PGS, he held numerous positions retiring as Vice President of Market Development. He also served as President of the Sorpine Mineral Institute and was a longtime member of the American Ceramic Society.
Larry met Maura on a blind date arranged by a fraternity brother in 1951 and the courtship never ended. They were married at Saint Philomena’s Catholic Church in 1953. Their wedding was covered in the society pages of the Pittsburgh Press and Monongahela’s Daily Republican. In 1958 work moved the family to Ridgewood, New Jersey for a 3-year period. Returning to Pittsburgh in 1961, they settled in Ross Township.
As the family continued to grow six children kept them very busy: swim team, Girl Scouts, Indian Guides, music lessons, football, baseball, marching band, gymnastics, and more. With a large circle of friends, they also had a very active social life. Larry was an avid Pitt Panther fan as evidenced by his more than 71 years holding season tickets to Pitt football. The family was also not permitted to schedule any meaningful event on a Saturday of a home Pitt football game. You could count on them being in their seats for every home football game regardless of the weather. Each game was followed by laughter and dancing at the University Club that would go well into the night. Larry and Maura were known for their dancing skills particularly their jitterbug maneuvers. In the off-season his focus moved to tennis, fishing, golf and bridge.
After retiring from PGS in 1986, Larry and Maura began their world travels. When asked his favorite spot to travel to, without hesitation Larry would always say New Zealand. They also enjoyed many cruises.
Larry was an avid golfer. After putting away his almost scratch handicap in his late 20s due to work and family commitments, after retirement he picked the game back up. He belonged to multiple golf leagues and was playing twice a week into his early 90s.
After Maura passed away in 2015, Larry moved to independent living at St. Barnabas in Gibsonia.
He will be dearly missed for his loyalty, quick wit, wry sense of humor, constant optimism, infectious smile, and relentless gametime commentary.
Friends received on Sunday, October 16 from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM at DEVLIN FUNERAL HOME, INC., 806 Perry Hwy., Ross Twp. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday at 10 a.m. at ST. Richard Roman Catholic Church, 3841 Dickey Road, Gibsonia, PA 15044.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made in memory of Lawrence G. Burwinkel can be mailed to St. Barnabas Charities, 5850 Meridian Road, Gibsonia, PA 15044 or online at StBarnabasCharities.com