In memory of
Lawrence "Zelmo" Denzel, 71 years old of Antioch, IL, passed away unexpectedly Wednesday, January 15, 2020. He was born October 18, 1948 in Chicago, IL, the son of the late John E. and Estelle (nèe Kuta) Denzel. Larry grew up in Chicago and attended Weber high school, where he excelled in sports, especially basketball, football and track. He continued his education and his love of sports with an athletic scholarship at Eureka College where he played basketball, football and track and was a member of the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity. He was such a skilled basketball shooter, that he practiced and tried out with the Chicago Bulls for an off-season after college. As an alumnus, he gave his time to coaching in the summer at Dave Darnell's Basketball camp, where his sons and many young athletes were mentored and guided by him. Of all his endeavors and achievements at Eureka College, his biggest was falling in love with his best friend, Judy. On July 10, 1971, Larry married Judith Ann (nèe Swigart). They moved from Oak Park to Lake Villa in 1975 and then to Antioch in 1981, where they raised their two sons, Kevin and Michael. Larry worked in management at AB Dick, Astro Machine and Cary Francis Group. He remained an avid sports fan and player. He enjoyed football, basketball, softball, golf, bags-all sports! He was the biggest fan of his two sons, Kevin and Michael. He was extremely proud of his son Kevin, for playing football at St. Ambrose College. He was equally proud of his son Michael, whom he coached though many years of basketball and all the way to the Knights of Columbus State Free Throw Championship-where he took second place. Larry proudly served his country in the United States Army National Guard. He was very connected and proud of his community as well. He belonged to the Antioch Moose Lodge and St. Peter's Parrish where he was the head coach of the St. Peter Neighbors basketball team. He loved coaching his sons and sharing stories of the several 1st Place 8th grade Neighbors basketball teams he coached. Larry is survived by his wife of 49 years, Judy; their sons, Kevin (Carey) Denzel and Michael (Jeremy Dobbie) Denzel; their grandsons, Jack Shaughnessy, Ben Denzel, and Owen Denzel; his siblings, Geraldine Les and Kenneth Denzel; and many in-laws, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother-in-law, Richard Les. Larry had a great passion for life. He loved musky fishing, the Green Bay Packers, Michigan football, playing bags, vacationing in Door County and spending time with Judy and friends at their retirement home in Florida. He was very proud and grateful to coach his sons and watch them play sports for many years. That same joy and passion was felt for his grandchildren Jack, Ben and Owen. He simply loved life and loved time with relatives and friends. He was always available and always there for everyone. He was loved greatly, and he loved greatly. He will forever be cherished and greatly missed by so many. Visitation will be held from 4:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. Thursday, January 23, 2020 at Strang Funeral Home, 1055 Main Street, Antioch, IL 60002. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. Friday, January 24, 2020 at Prince of Peace Catholic Church, 135 S. Milwaukee Ave., Lake Villa, IL 60046. Interment with Military Honors will immediately follow in Ascension Cemetery, Libertyville, IL. For additional information, call 847-395-4000. Please sign the online guestbook for Larry at www.strangfh.com .
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