NEWBURGH – Thousands of people from the Mid-Hudson region came to honor the life and service of former Army Lieutenant Colonel and 39th District State Senator William Larkin, Wednesday evening, at a wake held in the center for his namesake at the Newburgh Armory Unity Center.
Larkin passed away at the age of 91, serving his community until the very end.
Larkin, who had joined the U.S. Army when he was 16, served for over 20 as an Army officer, then as an assemblyman and senator, finally contributing his last year to the City of Newburgh within the Kaplan Armory Unity Center, a portion of which was dedicated to himself and his wife Pat.
Newburgh City Councilman Anthony Grice said he was totally dedicated to the community.
“His service to the City of Newburgh has been insurmountable,” Grice said
Throughout his 40 years of public service, and 20 plus years of military service, Larkin was known as a man of the people and someone willing to take on those who would follow behind him in his effort to serve the greater community.
Whether it was taking on medical marijuana rights for families with members suffering from seizures, or making sure the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor had enough eyes on it, Larkin was an individual of action, never letting something fall by the wayside.
Andy Komonchak, the special projects coordinator at Newburgh Armory Unity Center, said Larkin was not one to procrastinate.
“If he taught me one thing, it was if you’re going to do something – do it now,” said Komonchak. “If I said, x-y-z called and we’re wondering should we do this, he didn’t say, ‘Well, we’ll look at it tomorrow,’ He would pick up the phone and call whoever was involved and make things happen and get them done. He definitely didn’t put anything off.”
Larkin worked with youth at the Armory Unity Center, up until his passing.