Mechanic 02

Lawrence John Tarvas

April 12, 1942 ~ July 8, 2023 (age 81) 81 Years Old


Lawrence “Larry” John Tarvas, 81, from White Pine, Michigan, and the retirement residence of Orangewood Shadows in Mesa, Arizona, joined our Lord, his dear wife, Lorraine, his son, Clyde, his parents, Reino and Viola, and many other relatives and friends that moved on before him on July 8, 2023. He was exactly where he wanted to be at his property in Tomahawk, Wisconsin.

Larry was born on April 12, 1942, and was the oldest of three children. He grew up on the Tarvas family farm and attended Doelle School in Tapiola until their family moved to Ontonagon in 1955. Larry worked at a local gas station as a mechanic at a very young age and was very proud of this accomplishment. His experience working on farm equipment and automotives led to his desire to pursue mechanics as an occupation. Larry graduated from Ontonagon High School in 1960. He met the love of his life, Lorraine, and the two were married on December 1, 1962. They were blessed in marriage for over 57 years. Larry and Lorraine initially lived in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where they both found employment and had their first son, Bryan. After their second son, Clyde, was born they decided to move back to Ontonagon. In 1968, they purchased their first, and forever, home in White Pine, and had their daughter, Julie. 

Larry worked in the maintenance department, both underground and on surface, at White Pine Copper Company from 1964 until his retirement in 1995. He was highly engaged in the White Pine community serving as a Constable, Carp Lake Township Board Trustee, Member of the Volunteer Fire Department who assisted with 4th of July fireworks displays and community picnics, and sharpened ice skates for nearly every child in White Pine! He owned a small engine repair shop out of his home where he often provided gratis service to those in need.

Larry is survived by his two sisters, Kathy Thomas and Susan Baillargeon, his children Bryan (Carissa) Tarvas and Julie (Chris) Harris, sister-in-law, Gerry (Clyde) Golden, brother-in-law, Keith (Carrole) Perrow, as well as his grandchildren and great-grandchildren Cody (Megan) Tarvas (Liam), Carli (Nathan) Leet (Walker, Daxton), Clyde “Jeb” Tarvas, Ashley (Kyle) Schultz (Finley), Courtney, Harrison, and Breanna Tarvas, Brandon Reinhardt, Matthew, Mitchell (Tayler), and Jessica LaBerge, Jamie (Mike) Christie, Cameron Harris, Mike (Jackie) Wienckowski (Jayden, Brooke, Ben), Amanda (John) Rogerson (Max, Makenna), Danny Washburn, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Reino and Viola Tarvas, and stepfather, Harold Reichardt, his wife, Lorraine, and son, Clyde, as well as brothers-in-law, Robert, and Frank (Lorraine “Penny”) Perrow and Terry Baillargeon, and sister-in-law Darlene (Larry) Chouinard.  

In addition to family, Larry had many friends. His good humor, witty and fun personality made him a joy to be around. He lived his life with determination, perseverance, and happiness regardless of the circumstances. The family would like to thank the Aspirus Cancer Care staff in Wausau, Wisconsin, for their extraordinary care in helping Larry beat small cell lung cancer, Unity Hospice in De Pere, Wisconsin, for the outstanding care that was provided for Larry and our family over the past several months, and so many other health professionals along the way. A special thank you to the Ontonagon County Cancer Society for their support and to Dan Piippo, Larry’s friend of over 60 years, who was always there for Larry for companionship, fun, and support. 

To honor Larry, there will be a visitation held at Cane Funeral Home in Ontonagon, Michigan, on July 20, 2023, from 6:00-8:00 PM EST and a short visitation from 9:00-10:00 AM on Friday, July 21st with a Service to follow from 10:00-11:00 AM EST. A companion burial service will be held for Larry and Lorraine at the Elo Cemetery in Tapiola, Michigan, immediately after the Service. A Celebration of Life Fellowship Gathering will be held at the Konteka in White Pine, Michigan from 3:00-6:00 PM. In lieu of flowers, the Tarvas family is requesting a charitable donation be made in Larry’s name to the Ontonagon County Cancer Association at or Unity Hospice at

Cane Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.


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July 20, 2023

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Cane Funeral Home
310 N. Steel St.
Ontonagon, MI 49953

July 21, 2023

9:00 AM to 10:00 AM
Cane Funeral Home
310 N. Steel St.
Ontonagon, MI 49953

July 21, 2023

12:00 PM
Elo Cemetery
Corner of Elo Road and Cemetery Road
Portage Township, MI 49958


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