MISSOULA — Laurence Ginnings, 65, passed away at home Sunday, December 3, 2018. His battle with cancer was brief but hard fought.
Larry was born in Texarkana, Arkansas, four blocks from the Lone Star State to Texie and Sgt. Red Ginnings. Largely raised in El Paso, Texas, Red moved Larry and his older brother Michael to Chicago in 1964. Upon moving north Larry Jo Ginnings’ name was legally changed to Laurence Joseph, he started playing guitar, and his father remarried a woman named Harriet. Larry regarded Harriet as his mother, and one of his greatest mentors.
In Larry’s early teens the Ginnings family moved to Missoula. He would go on to graduate from Hellgate High School, class of 1971, and enter the University of Montana majoring in religious studies.
It was at UM where he met the first love of his life, Debbie. They both have said through the years that when they met they knew they’d met their match, and there was no other love. Graduation from UM set Larry free to be a full-time musician. His music took him all over the country and beyond with The Juice Band. He and Debbie kept up the musician life until the second love of their life, Noah James, was born on Larry’s 29th birthday.
After Noah was born Larry went to law school. He graduated from the University of Montana School of Law, entered into private practice in Missoula, and kept playing guitar.
In December of 1990 the third love of his life was born, Liza June. Larry would go on to begin as a defense attorney for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, over the course of almost twenty years rising to the ranks of chief prosecutor. Working for CSKT was without a doubt the most gratifying work of his career.
Laurence Ginnings was a truly incredible partner, husband, father, musician, friend and leader. He was a very private, and dignified man with true goodness of heart. His loss will be felt in this community and beyond. He never gave up playing guitar; even in the weakest days leading up to his death he would manage a few songs.
He is preceded in death by his parents, his brother and life long best friend Michael Ginnings, and his son Noah, who lost his battle to cancer in 2008. He is survived by his love Debbie, and his daughter Liza.
Funeral services will be held Sunday, December 16, 2018, at 2 p.m. at The Keep (102 Ben Hogan Dr., Missoula, MT 59803), overlooking the valley he loved, and where we will have the opportunity to listen to his music and celebrate his life.