Lawrence O. Proper | Obituaries

Lawrence O. was born. Proper, aged 64 from Copake, New York for the late Otis W. Proper and Lorraine (Hume) Proper on January 27, 1957 in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.

Larry is survived by his wife of 44 years, Teri S (Miller) Proper; His three sons, Todd L. Propper of Quebec, New York, Ryan B. daughter Bridgette SL Gregory and husband Michael of Schenectady, NY; three grandchildren, Ryan Alexander Propper, Wesley Lawrence Propper, and Jane Elizabeth Propper; and sister to JoAnn Proper from Durham NC.

After graduating from high school, Larry married his high school sweetheart, Terry S. Miller, on April 2, 1977, and raised their four children in the town of Copake.

Larry had a passion for cooking, grilling, and smoking meat on a homemade smoker in his backyard. He has also worked with various organizations at fundraising events for the past 40 years. One of his favorite fundraisers was Taconic Hills Dollars for Scholars Burger / Laverack Annual Alumni Soccer Game & BBQ, which his entire family helped out, and all of his kids played in.

Larry worked as a waiter at Morandi Restaurant and Bar in Hillsdale until September 1977 when he became a licensed insurance agent from the State of New York for the Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company, where he worked until January 1979.

Soon after leaving his position with Mutual of Omaha, he began his career with the Town of Copake Highway Department as a machinery/equipment operator. Larry has worked for the Copake Highway Department for more than 30 years, spending two and a half years as the Deputy Highway Controller and 11 and a half years as a Highway Manager. He also served as a member and treasurer of the District of Columbia Federation of City Supervisors.

After 30 years with the Copake Highway Department, Larry accepted the position of Building and Land Supervisor for the Taconic Hills Central School District where he worked from March 2, 2008 to January 27, 2012.

In addition to his full-time work with the Copake Highway Department, Larry was elected to the Copake Town Clerk office in 1985 and held that position from January 1, 1986 until December 31, 1998, at which time he became the city’s deputy clerk/tax collector. In November 2011, he was re-elected to the position of Town Clerk/Tax Collector and served two terms from 2012 until 2020 when he stepped down and again took on the role of deputy to support the next town clerk/tax collector.

At the age of sixteen, Larry began his community volunteer efforts when he joined the Craryville Fire Department in 1973, working his way up to the rank of lieutenant general during seven years of service.

He joined the Community Rescue Squad at the age of 18 in 1975 and has held the positions of treasurer, first lieutenant, advisor to Explorer Post 1160, and board member.

Larry joined Copake’s Volunteer Fire Department at the age of 23 and has held the positions of Vice President, Treasurer, Member of Five Alarm Caterers, Board Member, and Life Member. In recognition of his years of service in the department, Larry will be buried in his firefighter uniform and will be honored with a firefighter’s funeral.

In 1983, he became Secretary/Treasurer of the Board of Fire Commissioners and later served as Fire Commissioner and Deputy Treasurer.

Larry has been a frequent supporter of youth community sports programs. He organized the food franchise platform for the Roe Jan Youth Soccer Program for three years.

He served as a coach for the Copake Little League team for 10 years, and also held management positions as a treasurer and member of the Roe Jan Little Association board of directors.

Larry was a member of the Copake Parks and Recreation Commission and a park superintendent at Copake Memorial Park. In 2010, the town of Copake named the new park building the Lawrence O. Proper Community Park Building in honor of his years of dedicated service to the park.

In addition to his other municipal duties, he held the position of cemetery town official for Kobaki Williams.

An avid fisherman, Larry was a third generation member of Deer Run Lodge, Inc. , after his father Otis and grandfather, Myron, who were the two founding members.

Food donations can be handed over to the post-funeral gathering at the Copake Fire Department Building prior to the memorial service on Monday, December 6.

The Memorial Scholarship Fund is established to honor Larry’s many years of service to the local community. Please make checks payable to the Community Scholarship Fund (or CSF) and send them to the following address: Att n: CSF Teri Proper, 447 County Route 7A, Copake, NY 12516.

Friends are welcome and can call in on Sunday, December 5, 2021 from 1:00 to 6:00 pm at the Peck and Peck Funeral Home, Route 22 in Copake NY.

Funeral services will take place on Monday, December 6, 2021 at 11:00 AM also at the Peck and Peck Funeral Home.

Burial will be followed at the Quebec Cemetery.

To sign the condolence online, please visit


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