June 20, 1923 - August 2, 2012
Lawrence J. Desimone died on Thursday, August 2nd at Stony Brook University Hospital surrounded by his family. Lawrence was the youngest of four children born to Innocennzo "James" Desimone and Elizabeth Walsh Desimone in Medford, MA. Siblings were William, Elizabeth, and Victor. As a young boy, his family moved to Baldwin and his father was remarried to Josephine adding step-siblings Rose and Phillip Sarubbi and James and Mary Desimone.
As a kid in Baldwin, Larry became an exceptional athlete, especially on the baseball field and basketball court. After enlisting in the Navy, serving as an air gunner on the S.S. Ticonderoga during WWII, he moved to Hicksville and parlayed his talent for, and love of, athletics into a career. He received a B.S. from LIU, an M.S. from NYU (both in Physical Education) and spent numerous years as a beloved Phys. Ed. teacher, Coach, and Athletic Director in the Levittown School District until his retirement in 1980. During this time he also served as the President of the Nassau County Basketball Coaches, Nassau County Boys and Girls Athletic Programs, Nassau County Administrators of Health, Physical Ed., and Recreation, and was instrumental in the formation of the Levittown Youth Baseball program. Also during his tenure at Levittown, his Basketball teams consistently won awards for sportsmanship, inspiring both community spirit and legends, most recently chronicled in Long Island Monthly Magazine's 1990 article "The Dream Season".
Larry was also a fixture at Pierce Counrty Day Camp in Mineola and a devoted father to his five children: Diana Motschenbacher (Harry) of Hauppauge, Janice of California, Wayne (Sue) of Manhasset, Paul (Patty) of Plainview, and Tricia Panasci (Frank) of Wading River.
When he retired, Larry and wife, Rosemary, moved to Shoreham, but he hardly slowed down, serving as Treasurer of the Retired School Administrators and Supervisors and a member of the Section VIII appeals and protests committee. Larry also continued his athletic pursuits, playing competitively in the Senior Softball league, with whom he won the World Series in 1990. In 1997 his was inducted into the softball Hall of Fame for his achievements in the Jones Beach Fast-Pitch Softball league, including 1952 Most Valuable Player honors.
In addition to his wife and five children, he is survived by his sister Mary Desimone Cordella (Fred) of Setauket, 12 grandchildren, and 7 great-grandchildren. He is pre-deceased by one grandson. Wake will be held at O.B. Davis in Miller Place Saturday evening 7-9 and Sunday 2-4 and 7-9. Funeral Mass Monday, 10 a.m. at Saint John the Baptist R.C. Church, Wading River. Interment will follow at Calverton National Cemetery.