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In Memory

Lawrence "Larry: Russell

Lawrence "Larry" Russell
October 30, 1939 - July 13, 2023

If we followed Larry's wishes the only thing he wanted us to say was "Larry died." But we can't do that because he was too loved and respected.

Lawrence "Larry" Russell was born Oct. 30, 1939, in Hope, Arkansas, and raised in Norwalk, California. After serving in the U.S. Air Force, he traveled all over the United States working various jobs including digging pools to inspecting silos for bomb testing.

In 1975, Larry moved to Fairbanks, Alaska, to work on the trans-Alaska pipeline.

He was a quality control manager for Fluor and while there met the love of his life, Mette Speilberg. They married in 1977, and shortly afterward Larry was transferred to Isfahan, Iran, for two years with the company. Upon returning to Fairbanks, Mette gave birth to their daughter, Kiersten, and they remained in Fairbanks for the rest of their lives.

His career in the welding industry included owning and operating Inspection, Services & Testing, N.D.E. Consultants, Global Quality Services, and MLR Corporation. He was recognized as the "Godfather" of the welding industry, as he was highly sought after to perform QA testing for several companies throughout the state of Alaska and multiple locations throughout the United States.

Larry taught at the University of Alaska Fairbanks Community Technical College, and above all, mentored multiple individuals looking to enhance their own career in this field. Several of these people would go on to form their own companies, which continue to operate today.

After retirement he took up winemaking, bought a golden retriever, hosted many catfish fries, spent time with family and friends at Birch Lake, fishing in Valdez, cruising the Lower 48 in his motor home, and relaxing in Maui.

Larry was preceded in death by his wife of 39 years, Mette; his son, Robert; and grandson, Nicholas.

He is survived by his son, James (Jennifer); daughters, Renee (Mike), Sharlene (Ray) and Kiersten; grandchildren, Lance, Shantel, Samantha and Shannon; and great-grandchildren, Kadance, Bronson, Ethan, Rylan, Paislee, Brayden and Weslee.

Larry was laid to rest on July 19 next to his beloved wife, Mette. A small family gathering followed. Larry was dearly loved by his family and will be sorely missed by many in the Alaska community.


Published in Daily News-Miner on August 29, 2023

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08/30/23 08:47 AM #1    

Dale Thorpe

A true friend and Gentleman... He will be missed.

08/30/23 12:11 PM #2    

Larry Blachut

Larry was a true gentleman and an honest and straight up buisnessman.  I always enjoyed his friendship. 

08/31/23 08:13 AM #3    

Nita McCallum

What a treasure he was. Cheers Larry!

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