Lawrence Rogers, age 88, passed away on Saturday, May 25, 2013. A memorial service will be held at the Homer Elks Lodge on Saturday, June 1, at 2 p.m.
Lawrence was born to Willie and Lela Rogers in Abilene, Texas, on Jan. 22, 1925. He was raised on farms and attended school in several towns in Texas. Lawrence graduated in 1943 from Aspermont High School and joined the Military Service one day later. He served in the U.S. Army Air Force as an aircraft mechanic and gunner engineer. While serving in Italy with the 15th Air Force, he was shot down on his 15th mission over Vienna, Austria. He bailed out over Croatia, Yugoslavia, was captured by the Germans and detained in prison camps until the war ended. After serving on several military bases, he was honorably discharged.
In 1947, Lawrence came to Alaska and worked as an aircraft mechanic at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage. After visiting Homer in 1947 to look around, he liked it so much that he decided to stay. Lawrence homesteaded on the top of Baycrest Hill and started building his house. He worked as a professional clamdigger for a short time and helped build the Pioneer Hardware building, intermediate school and original library.
In the summer of 1948, Lawrence started working for the Alaska Road Commission, which later was known as the Alaska Dept. of Transportation and Public Facilities. He became foreman in 1973 and retired in 1978 after working 30 years.
In 1952 he began courting Tepa Hansen and then married her Dec. 11, 1953. This is their 60th year of marriage. Lawrence and Tepa worked hard on their homestead and raised three daughters – Linda, Judy and Anita. There were many building, driveway and machinery projects that kept him very busy. Lawrence also reeled in many fish and had lots of great fish stories to tell. Every fall, there was the hunt for moose and lots of harvesting from the garden. Lawrence spent many hours growing delicious vegetables in his greenhouse. He truly fed the family from the land.
Lawrence was quite a joke-teller and all the kids and grandkids learned their first jokes from him. He continued to share jokes right up to his last day. He was truly head of the family, had such a large presence and leaves behind loved ones who will miss him so much!
He is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, LaRene “Tepa” Rogers; daughters Linda Rowe and husband Dave; Anita Critchett and husband Bob, all of Homer; Judy Fowler-Morris and husband Dick, of Fairbanks; grandchildren Lisa Wilcox, Andrew Fowler, Marina, Denali and Dylan Critchett, and Kevin and Brian Rowe. He is also survived by sisters Annie Rogers and Mary Beth Piper, of Wichita Falls, Texas.
Lawrence was a charter member of the Homer Elks Lodge 2127, an active member of the Pioneers of Alaska Igloo 32 where he was King Regent in 1995, and he was a member of the American Legion Post 16. In lieu of flowers, donations in Lawrence’s memory can be made to one of the above organizations or Hospice.
Robert F. Winne (Bob), 88, died peacefully at home with his family in Amherst, MA on April 22, 2013. He was born Dec. 27, 1924, in Brockport, NY.
Shortly after graduating from High School, Bob was drafted into the U.S.Army in 1943 and served in the 75th Infantry Division, 289th Infantry Regiment. He spent his nineteenth birthday in full combat in the Battle of the Bulge in the Ardennes in Belgium. His shooting accuracy lead him to be selected as a sniper, but then was given a Browning Automatic Rifle as point man for his unit. The inexperienced division was thrust straight into combat in what is widely acknowledged to have been the toughest fight encountered in the whole of World War II, described by Churchill as “undoubtedly the greatest American battle of the war, and will be regarded as an ever famous American victory.” Of his platoon of 40, only Bob survived.
At the close of the war, Bob was stationed in France to supervise frontline POW German officers, then took charge of a Post Exchange and Commissary. He rarely spoke of his combat time until later years.
On his return home, he was accepted into Julliard School of Music, but instead chose to study architecture under the G.I. Bill, graduating from the School of Architecture at Rensellaer Polytechnic Institute in 1949. After working as an architect for a few years, he earned an M.A. in 1960, later becoming a Professor of Architecture at RPI and Pennsylvania State University, with appointments at Columbia University and Barnard College.
Throughout his life and in his retirement, Bob had many varied interests. He was a gifted photographer, and in the numerous summers that he spent in Homer with his son Tom, he captured familiar scenes in surprising and intriguing ways. He was an accomplished musician, furniture and cabinet maker, taught wilderness and survival skills, and his lifelong love of art led him to teach History of Art on a voluntary basis. He was exceptionally gentle, kind and generous. A man of exceptional integrity, he will be deeply missed.
He is survived by wife, Patricia Holland; son Clark Thompson Winne (Tom) and his wife Victoria of Homer; daughter Elizabeth Winne; and he leaves four grandchildren who grew up in Homer: Holland Hill, his wife Breanna and their children Goldie, Ruby Sue and Bryan; Vanessa Fefelov, her husband Alex and their children Alivia and Julian; Amon Winne; and Llosh Winne.
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