The road to happiness is paved with bricks of service to others

We have now been married over 50 years and Larry’s life of service to so many is something we can all seek to do as God inspires us. We have all been given gifts and talents. Larry is not only very adept in contracting but he is also a good writer. My talents are in the area of music, writing, and communication. Put a hammer in my hand and it will take me 12 times to pound it in. But true happiness exists as we seek to help our broken world. I had an opportunity to write about why my husband should be considered an everyday hero and this is what my neighbor and I said.

“We are living in our home right now because of the volunteer work Larry Schuerr has done for us,” said Karen of Fox River Grove. She has been battling with MS for over 40 years and was in need of redoing her house so she could keep herself from falling and still live in the neighborhood she loves. Larry put up ramps inside and out so she could get her scooter from room to room and to her van. He enlarged her bathroom door so her scooter could roll in easily.  He gathered a group of friends to pour cement in outside openings to prevent groundhogs from hibernating under their home. This is just one-person Larry has helped.

During the flooding on the Fox River, he helped the Holt’s fortify their home on the river from flooding their basement by sandbagging around their house.  He also poured cement for the Venetian Garden’s club house and provided a ramp. A young woman in a wheelchair wanted to know who put up the ramp so now she could easily make her way into the club house.

For years he collected bicycles and refurbished them for local kids in need of one. He began a program with Dean Jim Kelly, from Cary-Grove High School.  CG’s Interact students repaired and donated bicycles for children in the city. While teaching at Dundee Crown as an Industrial Arts teacher, his students worked with Habitat for Humanity in their Carpentry 3 program. On Saturday’s Schuerr would gather family, friends and students to work on homes where families were experiencing hardship and lack of finances to repair their homes. He continued to work with Habitat and various church organizations after retirement.  

Larry, an avid skier and former ski instructor, also worked with Adaptive Adventure, a group that taught skiing to the handicapped using various devises. His favorite memory was teaching a little girl how to ski with one leg. She was born with a leg that only grew to the knee. The joy he saw on her face when she was able to make turns down a hill made him cry.

Currently, Larry and I have both been volunteering at Humble Design Chicago where our daughter Julie Schuerr Dickinson is the director. This organization is being used to help so many in the inner city. More information is at

Volunteering has been a way of life for Schuerr who grew up in humble circumstances and never forgot what it meant to get a package from the VFW on Christmas. “Now that I have the means to help others, I joyfully do it,” said Larry who worked as a contractor and teacher.

“Larry lives the Christ-like life by helping those around him in need. That is where his joy in life comes from,” said Karen of Fox River Grove.