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Remembering a legend

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     Mr. Henry J. Larsen, the teacher known for swinging a sword around in the air while screaming at pep rallies, was born December 30, 1945, in Philadelphia, PA. He attended William Tennent High School in Warminster, PA, and graduated in 1963. After high school, he attended Bloomsburg State College, now Bloomsburg University, and earned his B.A. in science and his M.A. in history.

    Following college, Mr. Larsen enlisted in the army and served in the Vietnam War. Mr. Larsen was a member of the 25th Infantry Division during the war, and because of his duties, he was awarded the Vietnam Service Medal and Vietnam Campaign Medal.

    After serving in the military, Mr. Larsen moved to Danville, PA, and became a teacher at PAHS in 1974. Mr. Larsen was an American Cultures 3 and World Cultures teacher, and he coached football at PAHS for many years. Mr. Larsen continued teaching and participating in action-packed pep rallies until his retirement from teaching in 2003. During his retirement, Mr. Larsen substituted occasionally at PAHS.

     Mr. Larsen died March 29 at the age of 72. His funeral was held April 13 at Roat-Kriner Funeral Home in Danville.

     “On behalf of my beloved late husband, Mr. Henry Larsen, I want to tell you all how much you all have meant to him. PAHS has been his life for the past 44 years. He wanted to continue to be there so very much. He loved and respected the faculty, staff and his thousands of students. Thank you all for returning that love and respect to him. I ask all of you who have had the privilege of being in the classroom with him, if he has ever ignited a spark in you to share his love of history, of learning, a love of our wonderful country, a spark to be better and do better and to achieve your goals, to please keep that fire burning. He wished nothing but the best for you all. Please don’t ever forget him,” Mrs. Christine Larsen said.

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One Response to “Remembering a legend”

  1. Jeremy Powlick on November 5th, 2018 8:30 pm

    I never had the privilege of Mr. Larsen teaching me. I often heard his boisterous lectures (think of Robin Williams in the movie, Dead Poets Society) from passing by and occasionally pausing outside classroom lectures in the hallway. Unmistakable — especially, when he put on the Viking helmet to teach.

    Clearly, he had a zeal for life.

    And he must’ve seen that in placing himself as a character, the imaginations and wonder of his students would be captured, so they would remember what they learned.

    And, best of all, I heard laughter. Lots of laughter.

    To the many or few who read this, we grieve together and give thanks for his light in our world and in our hearts.

    “A little nonsense now and then,
    is relished by the wisest men.”
    — Willy Wonka, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

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