Dr. Larry Earl Axsom
Born August 5, 1937 in Indianapolis, Indiana to Lawrence & Irene Axsom. Married June 21, 1959 to Ruth Eason. Graduated from Purdue University, Ph.D. Computer Science 1969. Lived & worked in Houston, TX, Kettering, OH, Boca Raton & Jacksonville, FL. Retired in 1999. RV’ed across North America with Ruth until 2003. Settled in Greenville, TN becoming a member of EverGreene Woodcarvers Club and teaching at Tusculum College. Father to two sons, Matthew & Erik, and their wives Yvette & Karen. Grandfather to three grandsons Grant, Andrew, & Phillip and a granddaughter, Hannah.
Dear Family member,
It is with a deep sense of sadness that I inform you of the death of Larry Earl Axsom. Larry died December 15, 2008 after a three-month battle with cancer.
In the last Axsom newsletter dated May, 2008, Larry informed you that the Axsom Association of America no longer existed, but that he intended to keep you informed from time-to-time of Axsom news & history as it unfolded through an occasional Axsom Newsletter. Unfortunately, that also will now end.
Larry had a passionate regard for family. Through his efforts, he made Axsoms aware of how far we have spread across this country since Joseph H. Axsom first appeared in North Carolina. He brought Axsoms together through reunions, and what fun we had getting to know each other! I shall never forget his wonderful wife, Ruth’s, rendition of “Granny Axsom” as we stepped off the bus at the old Lee Cockerham farm, which is the location of the Old Axsom Cemetery in Surry County, North Carolina, nor of the table at a Branson, Missouri restaurant which ever so slowly raised until it was almost at chin level of petite Helen Axsom of Indiana. Without the reunions, we would never have had the privilege of knowing wonderful people like Betty & Alton Axsom or Joe & Norma Zanetti of North Carolina. Even though Norma had mounting health issues, she worked with Larry to organize & maintain the enormous data base on all the Axsoms, which required untold hours of work. I would not want to overlook those members who have served as treasurer of the organization-most recently Ralph Axsom of Oklahoma.
Larry gave each of us a very rare gift-his book From Surry They Came. A documentation of the Axsom family in America. This book will only become more valuable to you and future members of your family with the passage of time. As he mentioned in his last Axsom newsletter, the Library of Congress has a copy of this genealogy book. I have also provided one to the library of the Daughters of the American Revolution in Washington D.C. & to one of the largest genealogy libraries in the United States, which happens to be right here in Independence, Missouri. This book will forever become the starting point for the documentation of future members of your family.
Ruth was always such a major part of the reunions; graciously giving her time to all of us and always with a big smile. We owe her our endless gratitude! Please keep her in your prayers as she begins a new journey in life without her partner. Ruth plans to remain in their home at 1380 Old Kentucky Road South, Greeneville, Tennessee, 37743.
In Larry’s last newsletter, he told you that the small amounts of funds remaining in the Axsom treasury would be used “for two purposes: (a) to help maintain the old Axsom cemetery in Surry County & (b) to pay the costs of future publications of the Axsom Newsletter.” Ralph Axsom & I have discussed this issue, and I have had further discussions with Alton Axsom & Robert (Red) Axsom, who both live in North Carolina. Efforts to make arrangements for the cemetery’s care have been unsuccessful because of the cemetery’s remote location and difficulty in reaching it, even with a four-wheel drive. Therefore, with that in mind, and the fact that there will be no further Axsom Newsletters, the decision has been made to honor the memory of the person who made the Axsom Association possible. Larry was a graduate of Purdue University, and so we have asked Ruth to donate the funds to a Purdue University Scholarship in Larry’s name. In closing, if you would like to personally honor Larry, you may write a check to “Purdue Foundation. In the memo section write Computer Science University Scholarship-memory of Larry Axsom.” Send it to Mr. Javier Magallanes, Lawson Computer Science Building, 305 North University Street, West Lafayette, Indiana, 47907.
And lastly, a tip o’ the hat to Larry with our eternal thanks.
Marguerite Jenkins, past president
Ralph Axsom, past treasurer
March 17 2009