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Lawrence Edward Koliha
May 29, 1953 ~ January 3, 2024 (age 70) 70 Years Old
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Lawrence "Larry" Koliha, 70, of Durham, North Carolina, passed away on January 3, 2024. Larry was a loving and kind father, husband, grandpa, brother, and friend. His calm and quiet demeanor endeared him to all who knew him.
Larry was born on May 29, 1953 in Columbus, Nebraska. In 1961, his family moved to Fort Collins, CO where he grew up, eventually working at Woodward Governor while finishing high school. In 1971, Larry joined the army and was stationed in Amberg, Germany for three years, holding a variety of positions including tank gunner, driver, and tank commander. When he returned home, he resumed working at Woodward Governor finding his niche as a mechanical manufacturing engineer.
Larry's true passion, however, lay in what he called "anatomical engineering". After thirty years in manufacturing, Larry turned his sights to working with people instead of machines. He trained to be a Rolfing® Structural Integration Practitioner and never looked back. Larry was a gifted manual therapist, so it wasn’t long before he was teaching bodywork workshops internationally and working as a valued Lead Instructor at the Dr. Ida Rolf Institute® in Boulder, CO.
To Larry, family was everything. Nothing could top the love and pride he had for his daughters. So, eventually, when he met fellow Rolfing practitioner and teacher, Bethany, he simply brought her into his fold of loved ones. Larry moved to North Carolina to be with Bethany in 2008 and they were married in 2013. Together, they shared a Rolfing practice in Durham, taught classes in the US and abroad, and worked ardently to advance the field of Rolfing bodywork.
Larry is survived by his beloved wife, Bethany Ward, and daughters: Sarah Naki-Koliha (wife, Jesyca Naki-Koliha), Dori Koliha, and Leah Morley (husband, Brett Morley). He is also survived by his grandchildren: Ezra Kai Naki-Koliha, Harper Morley, Genevieve Corbari and Grayson Corbari. Larry is also survived by his siblings: Kathy Wolking, Mike Koliha (wife, Debbie Koliha), and Debbie Schappell (husband, Roger Schappell), as well as a large extended family.
Larry was preceded in death by his parents, Edward and Elaine Koliha.
A celebration of Larry's life will be held in the Spring, with further details to be announced. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to one of Larry's favorite charities, the Sierra Club, through their website: