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Obituary - Lawrence N. "Larry" Weiss
Joiner-Anderson Funeral Home & Crematory
Lawrence N. "Larry" Weiss
Lawrence N. "Larry" Weiss died of a heart attack at home in Statesboro on the 9th of August. It was his 78th birthday.
    Larry was born in New York City, the elder child of Joseph and Martha Weiss. Joseph died early, so Larry and his sister, Barbara, were raised by their mother alone.
    He attended the City College of New York for his undergraduate degree. There he was noticed for his exceptional promise in legal studies and encouraged to apply to Columbia Law School, where he graduated cum laude. He became a highly successful lawyer, establishing a law firm with colleagues, Pantaleoni, Govens and Weiss (later Pantaleoni and Weiss), which specialized in intellectual property law.
    He had many musicians among his clients, including the late singer-songwriter Dr. John.
    Larry loved the law, but even more than that he loved the works of Shakespeare. As a young man, he learned by heart the longest speech in the canon. The play he loved above all was "Hamlet." His interest went far beyond the usual sort of amateur enthusiasm. He published several articles on Shakespeare, all based on the kind of meticulous close reading he had refined during his legal work. He was very active on the listserv SHAKSPER, where both academics and non-academics post and debate. In 2013, he was entrusted with chairing a panel to decide a troublesome, long-running authorship question. The professional experts were all deeply impressed and grateful for his clear, beautifully argued conclusion.
    Until 2010, Larry lived in New York City, where, in 1994, he married Osnat Gad, a designer of fine jewellery. They shared an enjoyment of the cultural life of New York, of travel and of cats, and remained friends after their divorce until the end of his life.
    The last decade of his life he spent in Statesboro, Georgia, as the beloved partner of Julia Griffin, a literature professor at Georgia Southern, whom he met through their mutual love of Shakespeare.
    It must have surprised his friends in New York and London when Larry moved to a small Georgia town, but he quickly made friends and flourished here. He enjoyed the company of lawyers and doctors. He was keenly interested in medicine and his medical friends listened to him with respect.
    He sought out and enjoyed the musical and dramatic opportunities offered by Georgia Southern, and evenings with literary-minded academics. He loved his partner’s family, and they loved him. He surprised them repeatedly with his generosity, expressed both in gifts on their birthdays and in legal advice.
    He and Julia were far apart politically, but his kindness, wit and deeply loving nature made all that, even in this divided age, unimportant.
    Since his death, two very different people in Statesboro –- his doctor and a young friend who helped him at home -– have described Larry as a “father figure” in their lives. Another friend, who has known him for many years, says that the word Larry most suggests to him is “love”. His partner echoes this with all her heart. Plus qu’hier, moins que demain.
    Besides Julia, he is survived by his sister, Barbara Wiener; a niece, a nephew, two great-nephews and a great-niece.
    A celebration of life service will be held on Wednesday, August 26, 2020, at 2 p.m. in the chapel of Joiner-Anderson Funeral Home with the Rev. Jimmy Cason officiating.
    Donations may be made, instead of flowers, to shaksper.net., the Shakespearean website, staffed entirely by volunteers, where Larry is remembered so fondly.
    Friends may sign the online register book at www.joineranderson.com.
    Joiner-Anderson Funeral Home and Crematory of Statesboro is in charge of the arrangements.

Statesboro Herald, August 25, 2020
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