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Larry LeDue Memorialized in Solar Energy International Scholarship

Posted by: april
May 30, 2012
By Tom Locke, Editor, Fairplay Plume

Editor's Note: This article was previously published in the Fairplay Plume and is being republished with permission from the editor. In May 2012, Solar Energy International established the Larry LeDue Memorial Scholarship Fund to memorialize Larry LeDue, founder and owner of Sustainable Solutions, Inc., a company that offers energy system analysis and design, off-grid power installation, and turn-key solar energy systems throughout Park County, Colorado. Donations to the fund will allow people without the financial means to attend SEI trainings. If you'd like to contribute, click the Donate Now button above and be sure to indicate "Larry Ledue Memorial Scholarship Fund" in the comments area on the donation payment page.

Larry LedueSOUTH PARK, Colorado -- Larry LeDue, a former Park County commissioner candidate in 1996 who was known for his work to ensure the safety of South Park, Colo., water and for his business Sustainable Solutions died April 28 after a motorcycle crash in Mexico. Two services to celebrate LeDue's life, one in metro Denver and one in South Park, were scheduled.

Doris LeDue, who had her first date with her husband 29 years ago, said that he died on his way back from a vacation they had spent in Mexico with three other couples. The women had flown down while the men had gone by motorcycle, calling themselves the "Cabo Hogs."

One of the men, Aurora resident Bo Fox, flew back with his wife and had his bike shipped, but Larry LeDue biked back with Parker residents Mike Caskey and Jim Nirri. Larry LeDue was out ahead on a narrow country road on the Baja Peninsula when a truck appeared and clipped his handlebar. Caskey related to Doris LeDue that her husband was very lucid, and they were talking. "He said Larry was being Larry," she said. "For all of us who know him, he was just proud, strong. So he was
just talking, and just keeping it together." "The ambulance just didn't get there in time," she added.

He was 67 years old. LeDue's body is in the small town of San Quintin, and his friends are dealing with the paperwork to have the body cremated in Ensenada and then returned to Colorado. "I'm just so humbled by all the love and affection," said Doris LeDue. "Everyone has something to offer. They want to help and do." "I'm just being held up," she said.

What do people remember of LeDue? Ken DeLuccio, who worked with LeDue at Sustainable Solutions, said he could encounter a problem without letting it produce an adverse reaction. "He always had a smile on him. Nothing seemed to bother him. He was a problem-solver," said DeLuccio, who lives in the Thousand Peaks subdivision southeast of Fairplay.

"He was just a wonderful man. He was a loss to our community, for sure," he added. Doris LeDue said that what she's hearing from people is that they would remember him for his honor and being as good as his word. And there was his smile.

"He had a way. Just an easy smile," she said. LeDue was known for his activity with Save Our South Park Water, which expressed concerns about risks to water with drilling for natural gas in South Park. And he was known for his off-grid renewable energy solutions through his business, which often would come up with a hybrid system using wind and sun to work for a particular location. In the last couple of years, LeDue had also gotten involved in teaching about solar energy at Red Rocks Community College, Arapahoe Community College, Colorado Solar Energy Industries Association and the International Center for Appropriate and Sustainable Technology.

LeDue had built his own motorcycle on a Harley Davidson frame, she said. Indeed, before they moved to the Santa Maria Ranch subdivision near Como in 1998, they had an automotive service and repair shop in Aurora. LeDue also formed a group of motorcyclists who raised money for good causes. Called the South Park Scooter Boys, it included Park County Sheriff Fred Wegener. The LeDues had bought their South Park property in 1991, and even before they moved to it full-time in 1998, he ran unsuccessfully for Park County commissioner in the Democratic primary in 1996. At their South Park property they built their earthship home, and it is there that the celebration service will be held. There are two sons from his first marriage and five grandchildren. "I feel like his legacy is just about love and living large," said Doris LeDue. "What I've been telling my friends is just to hug their honeys more."

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