Larry passed away Friday, November 17, 2023 at the Wings Home in Allegan.
He was born August 15, 1956 in Paintsville, Kentucky the son of John and Louise (Salyers) Bevins. Larry was an electronics technician for Borisch Technologies until his retirement in 2011. Larry loved music especially the Blues. He was a dedicated member of the Kalamazoo Valley Blues Association.
About 30 years ago the newly formed Association decided to have a blues festival in downtown Kalamazoo. The weather was not kind and the event lost money. Those that planned it were discouraged. Someone stepped up with a plan and that person was Larry. His plan included recruiting sponsors and holding fundraisers. In 1996 another festival was planned and Larry who was not on the board at the time, was elected the new President to lead the effort.
Not only did the plan work, in 2001 Larry traveled to Memphis to accept the Blues Organization of the year award. The Kalamazoo Chamber of Commerce made July Blues month. Larry and the volunteer board had put Kalamazoo on the Blues map. A book was published in 1999 called “Blues for Dummies.” The authors were mostly Chicago based. A list was given of the top 10 Blues Festivals not to miss and among them was the Kalamazoo Blues Festival.
It was always Larry’s vision to get national recognition. This year the KVBA is planning its 30th Blues Festival. For those now doing the booking the major agencies are on speed dial. That’s all because of Larry Bevins who refused to let it die and dreamed of something bigger.
But Blues wasn’t his only love. The man could barbeque some ribs. He actually entered the annual rib competition with a few other KVBA members and took 2nd place at RibFest. Music, bbq and family were what Larry was all about. He will be greatly missed in the Blues world and beyond.
On September 16, 1989 he married Lorie Hodges who survives. Also surviving are his daughter, L. Katie Bevins, brother, Jim (Sharon) Bevins, brother-in-law, Edward Hodges and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, John Bevins II.
Friends may meet with Larry’s family from 5-7 PM, Tuesday, November 21, 2023 at the Winkel Funeral Home, Otsego, and from 10:00 A.M., Wednesday, November 22, 2023, until the time of the funeral service at 11:00 A.M., with Pastor Dave Alderman officiating.
Burial will take place at Hillside Cemetery at a later time.
Contributions in memory of Larry may be made to Wings of Hope Hospice of Allegan.
Messages of condolence may be posted at www.WinkelFuneralHome.com.