Larry Wendell Oldham returned peacefully to his heavenly home Monday, September 13, 2021, surrounded by family.
Larry was born to Gordon Keith and Joyce Oldham on January 28, 1946 in Sacramento, CA. He was a red headed, freckled rascal and he and his brothers often played pranks on his mother and little sister. On his first day of kindergarten he was sent home from school because he looked so young. He overcame that rocky start and between his junior and senior years of high school he joined the Navy and completed boot camp. After graduation he went straight to active duty and always remembered that his dad cried when he dropped him off at Treasure Island to meet his ship. He served six years in the Navy, two active and four reserve. He received a special blessing that promised if he would pray faithfully for protection for himself and his shipmates, he would be instrumental in saving the lives of many. Not a single serious injury took place during his time aboard ship although they passed through many dangerous situations as they transported troops to Vietnam.
Larry married his high school sweetheart, Jean Napier, in the Oakland Temple while he was still in the Navy. They had 7 beautiful children together: Larry, Jeannie, Sheri, Keith, Steven, Mary Ann and Edna Marie. Early in their marriage they moved to Idaho, then to Utah as Larry attended graduate school, and finally settled in Eagle, ID. Larry loved rocking babies and didn't mind staying up late as he rocked the kids to sleep. Babies loved him and he charmed every baby he ever met. His heart was really with his family.
After a divorce, Larry moved to Boise and continued his career in computer sales. He was a born salesman and a hard worker with a great work ethic. He was also an entrepreneur and ran several successful businesses, including Casper Process Service and Boise Engraving Co.
Larry was married to Barbara Low in 1986 in the Boise Temple. They had 35 wonderful years together, enjoying his first family and adding two more boys to the mix, Michael and Danny. Alliya Harris, his niece, joined the family in 2012 and is another daughter to Larry and Barb. The 17 grandchildren and 1 great granddaughter were a source of pride and joy. He thought of them every day and wished he could travel to be closer to them and be more active in their lives.
Larry loved to have fun and was always the life of the party. He loved playing softball and had a wicked racquet ball serve. He discovered a love for river rafting and orchestrated numerous trips on the Payette for friends and family. When he was involved in Scouting he encouraged many young men to dig in and complete their Eagle Scout requirements and regretted that he didn't finish his own Eagle. Larry was an accomplished handy man and added a dining room to his house, enlisting friends to help when needed. When a family room was added years later, he was on dialysis and couldn't do all the work himself, but he acted as General Contractor and made sure it was done the right way.
A short list of things Larry loved and we could tell stories about: kitchen appliances (anything with a cord), power tools (his latest acquisition was a jig saw for a job that only took 5 minutes), 1966 Ford Mustangs (had to be red). He loved ice cold Coke, although he quit recently and was kind of proud of that. He loved Mexican food, Chinese buffets, Cheetos and caramel corn mixed together (a proprietary blend called Larry's Mix). He loved shopping for watches almost as much as buying watches, and there was never a trip to Costco without a look at the newest watches on display.
Larry served faithfully for many years as a Stake Missionary and had wonderful experiences teaching the gospel. He served as High Priest Group Leader in the Boise 2nd Ward and loved and respected the older men he came to know. He was a counselor to two Bishops in the 2nd Ward. He recently confided that he fasted every Sunday during those years while he served so he could be more in tune with what the Lord wanted him to do. The men he served with became his closest friends and he described those times as some of the best times of his life. A highlight in recent years for Larry was being called as an Ordinance Worker in the Boise Temple. He loved the work and his coworkers and served with devotion until his health failed.
In the last 15 years of his life he faced many health challenges. He suffered serious chronic pain but never complained - he quietly decided that if this was his lot, he would not ask why but keep on smiling. A scripture he kept on his nightstand says it all: “My son, peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy foes.” (D&C 121:7–8.)
Larry loved the Lord and had a testimony that Jesus is our Savior, that because of Him we can return to our Father in Heaven. He was humble about his own faith but his actions showed loudly what his convictions were. We honor him for being a patriot, a good father, a faithful husband, a humble son of God. We love you, we miss you, and we know we will see you again.
Larry is survived by his older brother Mike Oldham, who should have gone first, by his children Larry and Bonnie Oldham, Jeannie and Willie Hamilton, Sheri and Mike Schanze, Keith and Jaime Oldham, Steven and Sadie Oldham, Mary Ann and Crystal Glaser, Edna Oldham, Michael Oldham and Sierra McAdams, and Danny Oldham; by 17 amazing grandchildren: Brick and Lily, Logan, Jessica and Calvin, Madison and Reagan, Kiana and Kota, Taishia, Teresa, Brooklyn, Gavin, and Hailey, Lexi, Savannah and Ellie, and little Eliza Grace, whom he had not met yet due to Covid but adored; and by many extended family member and friends who became family. His little dog Buddy will miss his morning naps with Larry.
A funeral service will be held for Larry at 11:00am on Saturday, September 18, 2021, at the Bogus Basin Chapel of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, under the direction of Relyea Funeral Chapel. The service will be streamed at https://mywebcast.churchofjesuschrist.org/events/boiseidahostake for those unable to attend. The brief graveside service with military honors will follow at Dry Creek Cemetery.
To send flowers to Larry's family, please visit our floral store.