Cover photo for Harold Raymond Larkin's Obituary
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1971 Harold 2024

Harold Raymond Larkin

May 3, 1971 — May 3, 2024

Union City

Mr. Harold Raymond Larkin, 53, of Union City, Tennessee passed away on May 3, 2024.  He was born in Nashville, Tennessee on May 3, 1971.  He was preceded in death by his father, Samuel Raymond Larkin and by a sister, Tiffany Larkin.

He is survived by his mother, Paula Williams Larkin of Woodbury; brother, Aaron (Renee) Larkin of Illinois; sister, Jan (Roger) Gunter of Spring Hill, TN; uncle, Jim (Linda) Larkin of Oakland, TN; aunt, Ginny (Gene) Danner of Ohio; several nieces and nephews; one great niece and nephew; and close friends from Union City, TN.

God’s path for Harold followed an unconventional route.  As the first born to Sam and Paula there were challenges and blessings in abundance.  Entering the world, he faced developmental delays and some other issues. Even so, with Sam and Paula’s love, nurturing influence, and their faith and trust in God, they knew everything would be alright.   Harold was blessed with parents who didn’t give up or give in.  They noticed early on he wasn’t achieving some of the normal childhood milestones.   They set about helping him do it in his own time and unique way.  Before he was able to walk, he was able to pull himself up with his arms, showing amazing strength for a baby. By 21 months, Harold finally took his first steps, and by the age of 2 ½ he was able to talk in complete sentences, albeit in his own unique speech pattern.  

His strength continued to be an attribute throughout his life.  In his preteen years he had the ability to hit a baseball across a field and to the end of a very long driveway where they lived. Although, many people outside of his family still didn’t know how to deal with or accept his challenges. This meant unfortunately, he was left out of some activities other children were able to enjoy. This didn’t deter Sam or Paula in the least.  They wanted him to have the most opportunities and experiences available.  Paula worked with him diligently to teach him to read, especially God’s word. Sam became a Boy Scout leader and Harold joined the scouts. He was able to learn to swim as well as enjoy many camping experiences.  He also learned to roller skate. They encouraged and enabled him to graduate from Riverdale High School in the class of 1990.

They also taught Harold to love unconditionally. He was a champion for the underdog.  When he saw someone making fun of or being mean to his siblings or another child, he would step up and protect them.  He used the talents God gave him, the strength of body and character.  They were key traits he carried through life.  He also held firmly to the belief in the Bible to not judge others.  Often, he would tell family or friends, “You just got to see the good in people.” His parents were devoted to his spiritual well-being in addition to physical and mental.  They made sure to teach him the Bible and how to love others.  His favorite verse was Matthew 7:12 “…do to others what you would have them do to you…”.   Living this Golden Rule, he approached everyone with a beaming smile and ready to make a new friend.

Growing up his parents let him take guitar lessons, which he thoroughly enjoyed.  So much so, he dreamed of joining a band.  Alas, it wasn’t to be.  That love for music translated into a savant-like ability to know and learn about different classic rock bands from the 70’s and 80’s.  He could recount all kinds of musical knowledge and trivia about the band members, song lists, and details that amazed everyone.  Although, some of his music interests like his beloved band, Kiss, didn’t line up with Sam and Paula’s tastes.  There were others they enjoyed together, like the gospel albums of Elvis and Alan Jackson. Ever the want to be rock star, on their last visit with Harold he made sure to strike a rock star pose for Paula and Jan.  Harold also had a keen love for movies, like Smokey and the Bandit and other comedies.  He watched many of his favorites so much he could quote most if not all the character’s lines.  

Whatever Harold’s challenges in life, they paled in comparison to the love he had for his family and friends. His unique outlook on life, love for God and people, combined with his love for music and movies will continue to be a constant topic of laughter and fond memories for them to hold onto in the years to come, so they can “Shout It Out Loud” like his favorite song.

Visitation will be held at Gentry-Smith Funeral Home on Saturday, May 11, 2024, from 12-2 pm.  Funeral services will follow at 2 pm in the Gentry-Smith Funeral Home chapel. His brother-in-law, Roger Gunter will share remembrances tied to God’s word to honor Harold’s life and legacy.   

Share memories or condolences with the family at www.gentrysmithfuneralhome.com  Gentry-Smith Funeral Home, 303 Murfreesboro Rd. Woodbury, TN 37190, 615-563-5337.   Because every life has a story. 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Harold Raymond Larkin, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, May 11, 2024

12:00 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Saturday, May 11, 2024

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

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