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Lawrence Musarra

Posted: Thursday, March 29, 2007

Lawrence Musarra of Juneau died March 17, 2007 in Tacoma, Wash., after a short battle with cancer. He was 52.

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He was born Jan. 13, 1955, in Jersey City, N.J., and graduated from St. Peters College. He served in the U.S. Coast Guard from 1977 to 1998, completing Officer Candidate School and Flight School Training. He also completed a master's degree in aeronautical science from Embry-Riddle University.

His career in the Coast Guard took him to: Kodiak, New Orleans, Traverse City, Mich., and Juneau. He worked as a search and rescue helicopter pilot, safety officer, and grounds and facilities director. After retiring from the Coast Guard, he worked for the Red Cross as an instructor and administrator, North Star Trekking as a pilot, and the U.S. Forest Service as the facilities director of the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center.

He was very active in the community and instrumental in establishing the Underwater Dive Park at Auke Rec. He was involved with: the Juneau Alpine Club, Kayak Club, Juneau Mountain Rescue, Public Radio stations KMXT and KTOO, Alaska Folk Festival, Perseverance Theatre and Southeast Alaska Veterans for Peace. He volunteered his piloting services to the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council and Alaska Transportation Priorities Project.

His family says he loved life in Alaska, taking every opportunity to explore the land, air and sea of this vast state. Notable trips he led included, a ski trip crossing the Juneau Ice Field and a family kayak trip down the Stakine River. His international adventures took the family to Australia, building an ultra-light airplane and circumnavigating the continent. The family provided motor home ground support.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Francis Xavier Musarra and Margaret Rose O'Shea of Jersey City.

He is survived by his wife, Lenne' (Holden) Musarra; sons, Aren, Sungie and Tim, of Juneau; sisters and families, Mary and Richie Franco, of Kearny, N.J., Kathy and Frank Russo, of Middletown, N.J.; brothers and families, Thomas and Marcy of Whippany, N.J., and Francis and Debbie of, Aurora, Ill.; grandmother, Anna Hitchcock Musarra; sister-in-laws and families, Julie Holden, of Anchorage, Meri Holden and Brad Stevens, of Mass.; brother-in-law William Holden; and mother-in-law Eloise Holden, of Tacoma.

A celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, March 31 at 6 p.m. at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center. Additional parking is available in the bus parking lot. Dress casual. In lieu of flowers, please donate to a charity of your choice or the family fund at Alaska USA Federal Credit Union.



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