Donald Maurice Laurencell, 71, of Oceanside, NY and Rock Tavern, NY, passed peacefully in the early morning of April 26, 2021 in the company of family.
Donald joins his beloved wife of nearly 40 years, Arleen (Garvey) Laurencell, as well as his parents, Maurice “Larry” and Elsie Laurencell, and younger brother, Jimmy Laurencell. He is survived by daughter Marianne Laurencell; son Thomas, favorite DIL Heather, and granddaughter Harper Arleen Laurencell; daughter Ándrea Laurencell and husband Tim Sheridan; sister Suzanne Laurencell; sister and caregiver Janet and her husband and his tag-team partner Clint Robin; brother-in-law Jimmy and wife Barbara Garvey; sister-in-law Cookie Stewart; sister-in-law Rae Garvey; sister-in-law Ronnie Garvey and husband Dan Kinch; brother-in-law John Garvey; many beloved cousins, nieces, nephews, great nieces and nephews, and countless friends and colleagues.
Don once wrote a poem, “I was born in 1950, my parents said that I was nifty.” And boy was he. Don grew up in Oceanside, NY, meeting the love of his life, Arleen, while she waited at the bus stop outside of the Nathan’s restaurant on Long Beach Road where he worked just after high school. Don and Arleen moved to Orange County after they married, making it the home for their kids. They became involved in St. Anne’s Episcopal Church, where Don taught Sunday School, served on the alter, was on the Vestry, Alter Guild, and was elected the Senior Warden. Don and Arleen also ran the Shepherd’s Kitchen feeding program at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Newburgh once a month, where Don could be found proudly welcoming guests at the door, directing them to the dining room, and leading them in the Lord’s Prayer.
Some of Don’s nifty accomplishments include his spot-on Donald Duck impression, being able to drive stick-shift while eating a Whopper without losing any of its contents, his spectacularly groan-inducing dad jokes, and his ability to make up words new words to any song he didn’t already know. He was a proud member of the International Sheet Metal Workers’ Union, Sheet Metal Worker’s Union Local 28, and the Keyman’s Guild. His active involvement in his unions and family attendance at yearly union picnics helped instill this great sense of unionism in his kids in their adult lives. Though he was a hard worker his entire career, Don also knew how to have fun, playing softball with cousins; shooting pool with friends when he first moved to Orange County; being active in numerous bowling leagues over the years, most recently on a team with Arleen and some close friends in the same league with Tom, Heather, and Tim; and playing golf with any number of friends and family on any course from New York, to West Virginia, to Florida, to the Bahamas.
More than any sport or hobby, Don loved his family and would do anything to help them when needed. Whether it was letting a toddler Ándrea ride the lawn mower with him, bringing all the kids to Action Park and bringing them back without major injury, directing the Sunday School play of David and Goliath starring Marianne as David (with Tom and Ándrea in outstanding supporting roles as a townsperson and a lamb), or sledding with all three kids on the hilly driveway, Don was dedicated to his kids. They weren’t even too embarrassed when he showed up to pool parties in his PBR “Blue Ribbon Beer Belly” belly shirt and water socks.
Don wasn’t just a great dad. He was also a spectacular Poobah to Harper. They started off as napping buddies and eventually turned into friends, playing daily board games. When they couldn’t be together, they enjoyed FaceTiming, with Harper showing off all the different animal filters, and acting out the part.
In Don’s memory, we ask that you do an un-choreographed dance routine, speak like Donald Duck, fire up the grill, catch a Yankee game with your family, or take a nap with your best napping buddy.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Arleen Garvey Laurencell Scholarship. Donations can be made online at www.sunyorangefoundation.org or via mail to SUNY Orange Foundation, 115 South Street, Middletown, NY 10940. Please be sure to note the name of the scholarship on your check or online.
Memorial visitation will be held on Saturday, May 1, 12-4, at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church, 179 E. Main Street, Washingtonville, NY.
We are a family owned and operated Funeral Home in Oceanside and we continue to maintain a long-standing tradition of personalized service that began with Mr. Earl Towers in 1933 and continued with his son Robert E. Towers. We are here to help you through this difficult time
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