Professional Landmen's Association of New Orleans - PLANO

PLANO Member Larry Beron passed away during the night from his battle with cancer

PLANO Member Larry Beron passed away during the night from his battle with cancer

Prayers for our friend, past-President of PLANO (2004-2005) and Lifetime PLANO member

Lawrence P. Beron.

Lawrence P. Beron, known as Larry to most, passed away peacefully in Nashville following a long and tenacious battle with cancer.

Larry was born in New Orleans and attended Metairie Park Country Day School until the ninth grade.  Moving with his family to The Hague, Holland, Larry graduated from high school at The American School of The Hague.  In Europe, he traveled extensively and developed what would become two lifelong passions: WWII history and Formula 1 racing.  Family vacations often centered around visits to the great race circuits of Europe and WWII battlefields—sometimes on the same trip.  

In high school, Larry was bitten by the stage bug after playing the role of Sky Masterson in a production of Guys and Dolls under the direction of the renowned director Richard Friedberg.  His passion for the stage never dimmed.

After graduating from LSU, Larry spent 20 years as a Landman for Shell Oil Company where he worked across the United States and made a number of lifelong friends wherever he landed.

In 1984 Larry entered Showtime’s national search for the Funniest Person in America.  After early success, he was beaten in the final round of the New Orleans preliminary by the eventual overall winner, a then unknown comic named Ellen DeGeneres.     

The opening of television and film near home rekindled Larry’s stage bug and he began to pursue parts in productions across the state.  Over the years, Larry landed a number of television and screen rolls.  Most notable was his portrayal of a crooked detective in Beyond a Reasonable Doubt where he played opposite Michael Douglas and a small but powerful role in the HBO series Treme.  Larry relished the friendships he made performing in a series of well received local comedic musical revues.

A lifelong lover of Carnival, Larry grew frustrated by the demise of the traditional simple brioche King Cake, in favor of those with excessive icing and gooey fillings.  To lampoon the trend, Larry created and filmed a series of shorts where he played the fictional character Larry Ragusa, creator of such delicacies as the muffalata filled King Cake.  These short films enjoyed a cult following.  Deep in the grip of cancer, Larry was delighted when a friend texted him a picture of a Larry Ragusa t-shirt worn by a patron at this year’s Jazz Fest.

Larry was delighted at the creation of The National World War II Museum in New Orleans.  Some of his happiest times were spent with friends and colleagues on the volunteer teams building the Higgins landing craft (LCVP) and refurbishing the Higgins PT Boat on now display at the museum.

For over 30 years Larry enjoyed the companionship and love of his partner Patricia (Pat) Kurzweg and was extremely close to her daughters Amy (Matt) and Bridget (Ben) and grandchildren Keating, Julia and Turner who considered him their grandfather and affectionately called him “Roux Rue.”

He is survived by his mother Elise and brothers Greg and Thomas (along with Wendy and his Goddaughter Scout).  Larry will also be remembered as “Uncle Larry” by dozens from a younger generation.

Larry’s outsized personality was loved and appreciated by all that knew him.  He will be greatly missed.

A memorial celebration of life will be held in New Orleans this Fall.