When our cousin, Larry Hein was a kid, my husband, Bob; our kids, Corrie Petersen and Amy Royce; and I went to visit family in Forsyth, Montana every summer. Larry was older than our girls by 6 and 7 years, respectively. That could have made him not want to hang out with the girls, but Larry also had a little sister, Kim Arani, and that made him able to understand the kinds of games and such that little girls wanted to play. Grandma Hein had a playhouse on the ranch she and Grandpa Hein owned, and for the girls, it was the coolest place to play. Larry didn’t mind playing house with the girls, even though it was probably not that interesting for him. He was just that kind of a kid. Easy going and a good brother and older cousin. I was thankful, because the girls wanted to get to know their cousins, and the girls and Kim wanted to play girls games.
Larry was a big help to Grandma Hein too, as I recall. Work on a ranch is really never done, and while kids don’t usually do the work of a ranch hand, they can help with things like gardening, mucking stalls, feeding the chickens and other animals, and definitely playing with the dogs that always seem to be part of a ranch. Larry was a good-natured kid, and he loved his grandparents. He was easy to get along with, and respectful to his elders. He was always a joy to be around.
As an adult, Larry started a mechanics shop and towing service. In the small town of Forsyth, Montana, he was pretty much the only show in town on those kinds of services, meaning that he was often busier than he could handle. His shop always had vehicles waiting their turn, and the towing part of the business kept him running a lot. After Larry’s dad, Ed Hein died, Larry did his best to keep his business running while helping his mom, Pearl and his sister, Kim deal with their grief. He was a good man, but Larry lost his life to a heart attack just three months and two weeks later. The two losses were devastating to the whole family. Today would have been Larry’s 54th birthday. Happy birthday in Heaven, Larry. We love and miss you very much.