Lawrence J. Desimone

June 20, 1923August 2, 2012

Lawrence J. Desimone died on Thursday, August 2nd at Stony Brook University Hospital surrounded by his family. Lawrence was the youngest of four children born to Innocennzo "James" Desimone and Elizabeth Walsh Desimone in Medford, MA. Siblings were William, Elizabeth, and Victor. As a young boy, his family moved to Baldwin and his father was remarried to Josephine adding step-siblings Rose and Phillip Sarubbi and James and Mary Desimone. As a kid in Baldwin, Larry became an exceptional athlete, especially on the baseball field and basketball court. After enlising in the Navy, serving as an air gunner on the S.S. Ticonderoga during WWII, he moved to Hicksville and parlayed his talent for, and love of, athletics into a career. He received a B.S. from LIU, an M.S. from NYU (both in Physical Education) and spent numerous years as a beloved Phys. Ed. teacher, Coach, and Athletic Director in the Levittown School District until his retirement in 1980. During this time he also served as the President of the Nassau County Basketball Coaches, Nassau County Boys and Girls Athletic Programs, Nassau County Administrators of Health, Physical Ed., and Recreation, and was instumental in the formation of the Levittown Youth Baseball program. Also during his tenure at Levittown, his Basketball teams consistently won awards for sportsmanship, inspiring both community spirit and legends, most recently chronicled in Long Island Monthly Magazine's 1990 article "The Dream Season". Larry was also a fixture at Pierce Counrty Day Camp in Mineola and a devoted father to his five children: Diana Motschenbacher (Harry) of Hauppauge, Janice of California, Wayne (Sue) of Manhasset, Paul (Patty) of Plainview, and Tricia Panasci (Frank) of Wading River. When he retired, Larry and wife, Rosemary, moved to Shoreham, but he hardly slowed down, serving as Treasurer of the Retired School Administrators and Supervisors and a member of the Section VIII appeals and protests committee. Larry also continued his athletic pursuits, playing competetively in the Senior Softball league, with whom he won the World Series in 1990. In 1997 his was inducted into the softball Hall of Fame for his achievements in the Jones Beach Fast-Pitch Softball league, including 1952 Most Valuable Player honors. In addition to his wife and five children, he is survived by his sister Mary Desimone Cordella (Fred) of Setauket, 12 grandchildren, and 7 great-granchildren. He is pre-deceasced by one grandson. Wake will be held at O.B. Davis in Miller Place Saturday evening 7-9 and Sunday 2-4 and 7-9. Funeral Mass Monday, 10 a.m. at Saint John the Baptist R.C. Church, Wading River. Interment will follow at Calverton National Cemetery.


  • Visitation Saturday, August 4, 2012
  • Visitation Sunday, August 5, 2012
  • Visitation Sunday, August 5, 2012
  • Funeral Mass Monday, August 6, 2012
  • Interment Monday, August 6, 2012

Lawrence J. Desimone

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Frank Oley

August 6, 2013

I graduated from LMHS in 1957 where I played varsity basketball for three years. I then went on to play four years of varsity college basketball. It was during the turbulent and confusing high school years that Coach Larry Desimone had such a positive influence on me that it carried me thru those tough college years, the military, my vocation and the challenges of raising five children. I was very fortunate to have had such a great Coach and to know such a caring and beautiful man. A light has been extinguished but his flame still dances within me. The Lord sent the right person in my life at the right time. Coach, look forward to seeing you again and maybe, just maybe, we can have another “friendly” game of three on three basketball.

December 5, 2012

I will always remember dancing with you, Uncle Larry, at Sandi's wedding ~

Gail Desimone, Miami Beach, FL

September 22, 2012

After a lifetime of personal achievements--family, career, patriotic duty,and reaching retirement--only to continue his athletic pursuits to keep contributing to social and personal goals, Coach now has reached the ultimate destiny. Coach Larry, you have inspired so so many by your lifetime example of how to live the good life...serving others, helping others and being there for so many who needed you. I salute your lifetime contributions to all who are successful now because of your love for helping others...May you rest in peace in the Lord! Dorothy Oley Ritter, Houston, TX

Cindy Brower

August 29, 2012

I will always remember you warm smile and handsome face. I wish we could have spent more time together Uncle Larry. Love you, Cindy

Gary Flynn

August 28, 2012

My heartfelt condolences to the entire Desimone family,

"Coach D" will always hold a very special place in my life, a person who I respected a great deal and who provided me with many lifetime memories of playing basketball for him at Levittown Memorial. His legacy will not only be as a legendary high school coach but but as a dedicated husband, father and grandfather.

I think anyone who spent some time with "Coach" walked away with a little bit of "D" in them.

RIP Coach, you touched the lives of many who will never forget that impact.

Larry Arann

August 18, 2012

At a time in my life when so many things seemed tentative and incredibly fluid, Coach "D" was there with his strength of purpose, character and loyalty. That great smile and laugh was always there and complimented that "no nonsense, get it right" basketball knowledge so willingly imparted. I looked up to him, leaned on him and know with all my heart that he made me a better person.
This loss is deeply wrenching to me. And, while the jump shot and my spot in the zone press have long ago lost their luster, they have never, along with so many other remembrances, been lost to the Desimone part of my scrap book. Rest in peace, Coach. I will always miss you.

Marty Cavanagh

August 10, 2012

Condolences to the family. Coach "D" was
all "business" both on the field and on
the court. He was my baseball and
basketball coach.

He was a stand-out softball player who
covered ground on the field as he did
in life. Missing you Coach "D".

Marty Cavanagh Class of 56

August 9, 2012

I only played one year for Coach Desimone but it was one great year. My condolences to his family. RIP Coach.
Bob Lent class of '61

Loralie Groucott

August 8, 2012

Grandpa "D" Larry, was so special to me and I will miss him. My only console is that he will be watching over my Brother Edward (Eddie) R.I.P.

August 7, 2012

I like to send my sincere condolences to his family. He was a great leader and well respected individual with his Levittown Memorial family... Bob Cavanagh class of '63