July 28, 2023
In Loving Memory (1945-2023) ~
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of our Father and Papa, Mr. Larry Merkel on Friday, July 28, 2023, in Red Deer, Alberta at the age of 77 years.
Larry was born in Drumheller, Alberta, and was the eldest son of Emil and Herta Merkel. Larry was raised on the family farmstead with his two siblings, Brian, and Darryl.
Larry began his love for farming at the tender age of 8 years, where he began milking cows and performing other farm chores, and this is where his strong work ethic was instilled.
After graduating high school in 1963, Larry ventured to Chicago, Illinois to attend a technical institute to learn how to operate and repair heavy equipment, which provided necessary skills to help out on the family farm.
After working in farming for a few years Larry wanted to work in the construction industry, so his young family moved to Okotoks, Alberta, and he became involved with building apartment complexes and houses in Calgary, Alberta. With the onset of the early 1980s, Larry continued with his passion of working on the oil rigs from when he was younger. Larry worked as a driller and later was promoted to a tool push with Can-Tex Drilling and Exploration. His real passions were working in the farming and oil rig industries.
After retiring from the oil rigs, Larry focused his energy on another passion where he became a successful investor in the stock and futures markets. Larry was an avid outdoor enthusiast, where he enjoyed fly fishing, camping, and hunting. He also loved sports, especially hockey and softball, which he played with the Okotoks Oldtimers.
Larry also loved watching the New Zealand All Blacks play in the National Rugby League. He also enjoyed leisure time at the beaches and local swimming pools soaking up the sun.
Larry was a gifted problem solver, and he had an amazing talent for fixing anything from a Caterpillar D8, a drilling rig that froze up at minus 60 degrees Celsius, or any problem that life could throw at him. He will be remembered for his great sense of humor, words of encouragement and strong work ethic as he was still doing 245 pushups every other day.
His joy was spending time with his family. With his terrific sense of humor and soft heart for his grandchildren, he would join them in getting a temporary tattoo.
Larry is survived by his three sons; Gary (Radya), Derek and Bret (Patti); and their mother Mae; along with his grandchildren, Sophia, Zayn, Cody, Ryan, Joel, Sidney, and Ty.
Larry’s motto was “the only thing stopping you from doing anything in life is fear”. Thank you, Dad, and Papa, for everything you did for us and the knowledge and wisdom you shared. We will miss you dearly. Farewell.
Condolences, memories, and photos may be shared and viewed at www.parklandfuneralhome.com
Arrangements in care of Parkland Funeral Home and Crematorium, 6287 – 67 A Street (Taylor Drive), Red Deer. 403.340.4040.
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