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Lawrence “Larry” Jonas Schwahn, age 82 of Buffalo, Minnesota, peacefully passed away on September 17, 2023 surrounded by his family. Born on June 21, 1941, in Strasburg, North Dakota, Larry was the beloved son of Leopold and Katherine (Nicholas) Schwahn.

During his high school years, he excelled in academics and athletics. Larry was a three-sport All-conference athlete in baseball, football, and basketball at Strasburg High School and Valley City State University. He received the honor of class valedictorian at Strasburg High School, foreshadowing a lifetime of intellectual pursuits. Larry’s love for sports persisted throughout his life, with an allegiance to the Brooklyn Dodgers, the Minnesota Twins, and the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers.

Larry received his undergraduate degree at Valley City State University, his Master’s in Education at North Dakota State University, and graduated from the Graduate School of Banking at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. It was during his college years at Valley City State that he met his wife, Maxine Bauch. They were joined in marriage on May 29, 1963, in Valley City, North Dakota.

Larry’s professional journey began in the classroom, where he shared his knowledge and passion for history and social studies. He was not only an educator but also a basketball coach at Finley, North Dakota, where he led his team to the North Dakota State High School Tournament, and later coached basketball and football at West Fargo High School and Fargo North High School. Larry’s enthusiasm for sports was infectious, and he instilled a love for the game in countless students. Larry was an excellent baseball player. He played and coached baseball for Virgil Hegeholz with Fargo Glass and Paint and the Fargo-Dilworth Agency Athletics in Fargo, ND. Virgil was a banker who was instrumental in transitioning Larry to a new career in banking and eventually a move to Buffalo, MN, when he purchased the Oakley National Bank. Virgil and his wife Evelyn were mentors to Larry and were family to the Schwahns.

He retired from teaching in 1977, at which time he transitioned to banking, relocating his family to Buffalo, Minnesota. His commitment to the community extended beyond his work. He was an active member of the Elks and Lions Clubs, serving as a pillar of support for various charitable initiatives. He was also a valued board member at Klein Bank, an advocate for education through his service on high school scholarship committees, and a steward of faith on the St. Francis Xavier Church finance council. His community involvement touched the lives of many.

His wit, honesty, and trustworthiness endeared him to all who had the privilege of knowing him. Larry was a humble man, deeply devoted to his family and his Church. He served his community with dedication and left a legacy as a good person who made the world a better place.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Leopold and Katherine; brother, Aloysius Schwahn; sisters, Imogene Schwab and Sister Mary Myles; and brothers-in-law, Christopher Reimer and Joseph Schwab.

Larry is survived by his wife, Maxine; children, Larry “Scott” (Shamiere) Schwahn and Cara (Paul) Otto; grandchildren, Freddie Luster, Zohra Ruona, Mya Otto, and Megan Otto; sisters, Rose (Merritt) Powell and Kathy Reimer; special cousin, Jim Warzeka; and many other relatives and friends.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held Saturday, September 30, 2023 at 11:00 AM with visitation beginning at 9:00 AM at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Buffalo, MN. Inurnment will follow at St. Francis Xavier Cemetery in Buffalo, MN.

In lieu of flowers, donations or checks may be directed to “877 Scholarship Foundation – Larry Schwahn”, as the family will be creating a scholarship in Larry’s name for students at Buffalo High School.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo. Online condolences for the family may be directed to www.thepetersonchapel.com

12 Guestbook Entries

  1. Al Dosch

    Sincere sympathy to the family. Larry was a longtime friend of mine. I had the honor of coaching Larry in high school where he was an outstanding athlete and also an excellent student. We played together during summer amateur baseball seasons. His caring and friendly ways were always tops. He was always available to help when needed. Will be missed by many. I treasure the many years of friendship with Larry. Rest In Peace my friend. RIP

    Reply
  2. Beverly Johnson

    Larry will be missed by many. He was always a kind and loving man.

    Reply
  3. Shamiere Schwahn

    A man dedicated to his family and faith. From all of yesterday’s stories I have heard (and those to yet to hear) to my own personal interactions, Larry is a man that I wished I had more experiences and learnings with. May his legacy always be remembered and all of his family and loved ones be comforted that he has eternal life with Our Father.

    To Larry!

    Love,
    Shamiere

    Reply
  4. Alysia Buckhanan

    I am sorry for your loss!

    Reply
  5. Ron Tollefson

    It’s with great sadness reading about the passing of Larry “Coach” Schwahn. He was my basketball coach at West Fargo H.S. during my sophomore and junior seasons and had a profound influence on my life. I became a H.S. teacher and coach largely due to his influence. A great person in every aspect of life. He will be missed by so many.

    Reply
  6. Ben Herr

    I remember Larry as a student at Valley City State University.
    A star athlete, friendly, intelligent, and humble.

    Reply
  7. Rich Mattern

    Larry was my midget baseball coach in Strasburg. He was a great coach which carried on later in his life. I also remember him as being an outstanding athlete. RIP Larry.

    Reply
  8. Jay Johnson

    I was very sorry to read of Larry’s passing. I played baseball with him on the Fargo Glass and Paint team, and also did my student teaching under his mentorship at West Fargo High School. He was great guy, teammate, and mentor. Please accept my deepest sympathy in your loss, Maxine and family.

    Reply
  9. Paul Linnell

    Larry was a leader and his impact on those of us he knew and coached will forever be a part of me!! His heart showed in everything he did!
    We Finley basketball players learned, not only how to play and be a team, but what respect is!!! He will forever be alive in my heart!!!

    Reply
  10. Bob Nelson

    Fond memories of Coach at WFHS, class of 1969. Served as a great role model for all those who played for him.

    Once a Packer, always a Packer.

    Reply
  11. Ty & Gail Hauge

    Maxine: Our sympathies to you and your children. Coach Schwahn meant a lot to me.

    Reply
  12. David Hennings

    I was blessed to have Larry as a teacher and Coach at WFHS. He was one of the nicest men I’ve ever been around. He was a model of how to act toward others for every kid that had him as a teacher or coach. I ran into him at a MN Gopher basketball game years after high school, and he was the same gentleman I had known as a teacher and coach. Truly one of God’s Good Guys

    Reply

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