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National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Age: 51
Year of Death: 2003

Lawrence J. Sweetnich

Submitted by his wife

Larry Sweetnich was an 18 year veteran of the Garfield Heights Fire Department. He was 51 years old when he died at the firehouse on March 15th‚ 2003.

His love and legacy lives on though me‚ our 3 children‚ his family‚ and the community he lived in all his life and served for.

Larry knew everyone in the city and everyone knew him. He felt living in the city he worked in kept him in tune with the community. He was very devoted to our family and to the children in the city‚ which was very evident. He was a coach for our children for baseball and softball. The kids he coached had such respect for him. He was constantly teaching and spreading safety knowledge without anyone realizing it.

He was a sensitive and passionate man with a great sense of humor. Larry could tell a story like no one else and had a memory that was untouchable. He has such respect for people and nature. He was good at whatever he did.

Larry lived life to the fullest with the bare necessities. It was always all about family with him.

During his life‚ he served in the Army Reserves‚ was an EMS instructor for the state of Ohio‚ an adult CPR instructor for Garfield Heights High School and was a Communications Specialist for Metro Hospital’s Life Flight. He did volunteer work; coaching and giving first aid classes and CPR classes to the baseball leagues and cub scouts. Anyone who called‚ Larry was there.

He loved to cook. Larry made the best ribs in town; just ask his family and his shift! He also enjoyed fishing and golfing. When you could not find him‚ he was at Ladue Reservoir‚ fishing of course!

Larry was and still is a big impact on many lives. He always knew the right thing to say. He loved with all his heart and in our hearts we see him everywhere. He is and always will be the love of our lives.

He is survived by me‚ his wife of 21 years‚ our 3 children‚ Jennifer‚ Nicholas‚ and Jerrica‚ his mother‚ three brothers‚ sisters in law‚ brothers in law‚ nieces‚ nephews‚ and his fellow firefighters of the Garfield Heights Fire Department‚ and departments across the country.

This is such a wonderful honor and privilege for Larry and all of us. We are so proud of him and the other firefighters honored this year and other years.

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  1. I really can’t any other things to say about Larry. Because what Jeanette pretty sums up Larry. My daughter went to school with Jenna. They were on the same softball team for years. Larry was a kind, loving, and caring person. He would come to my house in a professional capacity as EMS. My mom needed to go to the hospital. I always remember how sweet, kind, and tender when working with my mom. He also was like a father figure to my daughter. Even though he’s been gone a while, he always pops up in our conversations. R.I.P. Larry.

    – Denise Ingola
  2. Working at Station 2 today, can’t believe it’s been 15 years. BBQ Ribs and 007…..good times.
    RIP Brother

    – Bob Wikle