August 24, 1948 ~ December 5, 2022

Born in: California
Resided in: Torrance, California

Larry Wayne Gunsalus

Aug. 24, 1948 – Dec. 5, 2022

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Larry Wayne Gunsalus, 74, on December 5, 2022.

Larry is survived by his daughter Kerry and her husband Michael, his partner Joyce Watanabe, his brother Jim, his nephews Jim, Zakk, and Maxx, and nieces Leslie, Betsy, Meg, Molly, and Kate; as well as close friends, coworkers, and fellow volunteers. He is preceded in death by mother Wilmetta (Billie) and father Lurton (Gunny).

Born in Lawndale and raised in Hermosa Beach, Larry grew up within a third-base foul ball of Clark Stadium where he pitched little league and developed a love of baseball, sports, and being outside. He graduated from Redondo Union High School in 1965, after time on both the baseball and basketball teams, and he continued as a left-handed pitcher at El Camino College and Cal State Northridge.

He was a voracious reader and devoted himself to learning and aiding others. Larry received his pharmacy degree from the University of Southern California and began his career in 1973, holding positions at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital, Torrance Memorial, and South Bay Hospital. He worked for Kaiser Permanente as Deployment Lead for Kaiser’s Electronic Medical Records integration and retired in 2018.

Larry relished fatherhood. He burst with pride at piano recitals and tennis matches, in Kerry’s academic achievements, and all the milestones of her life. He enjoyed his many trips to the east coast to visit her, striking new friendships along the way and adding to the many people far and wide who will miss him dearly.

Along with post-retirement travel, he continued a life of learning and devotion to alleviating suffering. Larry audited classes and lectures at California State University Dominguez Hills and volunteered for many causes. He was appreciated for his crack-of-dawn shifts downtown at LA Catholic Workers’ soup kitchen. Larry was also a cherished volunteer at the Marine Mammal Care Center in San Pedro, where he took great satisfaction in releasing rehabilitated sea lions and seals to the ocean. He also enjoyed working at JudiKins Rubber Stamps and formed many friendships there.

Larry will be remembered fondly by his friends, family, and the many people he touched through community activities and volunteering. He loved going on neighborhood walks with Joyce, especially this time of year, when they enjoyed the holiday lights in his hometown of Torrance. His kindness, generosity, sense of adventure, and killer margaritas will never be forgotten. May he rest peacefully.

Please join Larry’s family and friends for a Celebration of Life at 2 pm on Sunday, January 15, 2023, at the Hermosa Beach Kiwanis Hall (2515 Valley Dr.) There will be opportunity to share memories at the celebration and on the Lighthouse website. In lieu of gifts, donations may be made in Larry’s honor to LA Catholic Worker or the Marine Mammal Care Center. Donations may also be given to Kerry, to be distributed to Larry’s favorite charities. Mail can be sent to Larry’s home address. He will be interred at Pacific Crest Cemetery on Monday, January 16 with a private ceremony.

Donate – Marine Mammal Care Center Los Angeles

Donations – Los Angeles Catholic Worker (

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  1. I’m so so sorry to hear about Larry’s passing. He was a great man. Love and Hugs to you ALL. Love Lisa Casey.

  2. I cannot believe he is gone. He was such a great friend to me and my partner Steve who knew him for 40+ years.He was always fun to be around and would make trips up to the Bay Area where we went on hikes in the surrounding area to appreciate the beauty of nature.He first became interested in Marine Mammal rescue when we visited the center in the Marin Headlands many years ago so i was not surprised to hear that he was volunteering in later years.He will be sorely missed by all who knew him.My heart goes out to Kerry and Joyce who feel the great void of his loss so deeply.

  3. candle 1Unfortunately, we didn’t know him long, but his kindness impacted our lives immensely! We will miss having the opportunity to grow our friendship, but we will cherish the memories we shared & his spirit will live in through them, until we meet again! Rest in Paradise, sweet Larry!

  4. candle 7I am so sad to hear about the passing of Larry. I worked really closely with him for years before his retirement. He was such a lively, funny, caring, friend and coworker.
    Sending my deepest condolences to all of you. Fly high, beautiful angel!

  5. candle 7Larry was a joy to be around. I’m sad that he’s not with us any longer. My first thoughts when hearing he had passed, was God needed the help of a gentle giant whose heart was full of love for animals and people to do heavens work.
    Larry was already doing that work here on Earth. It may that the Lord wanted Larry’s company or to just give this amazing human being rest. From his collection of gnomes to his gentleness with elderly, this helpful Saint is missed and loved.

  6. candle 2So glad for the years that Larry and Joyce shared together and for Larry’s spirit of volunteerism. A life well-lived.

  7. I always thought of Larry as a friend first and then a co-worker. Just learned of his passing this morning, I am deeply saddened and I wish his family well in this difficult time.

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