County Commissioner Larry Southerland, age 63, of Cambridge died March 19, 2014 at home surrounded by family. A Celebration of Life will be held at 11:00 AM on Monday, March 24th at The Braham Area Community Center, 655 8th Street SW with Rev. Richard Chronis officiating. A visitation will be held on Sunday, March 23rd from 3:00 – 7:00 PM at Strike Funeral Home – Cambridge Chapel and also one hour prior to the service at the community center on Monday. Interment will be in Rice Lake Cemetery in Braham.
Larry was born October 3, 1950 and raised in Braham, MN during the baby boom of the 1950’s and 1960’s, Larry followed his parents’ example of dedication, diligence and hard work in his public service career. He was a dedicated and hard working public servant and worked tirelessly for Isanti County and his community. Following college courses at St. Cloud State he joined the Isanti County Sheriff’s Department working his way up from dispatcher to deputy to investigator, serving 19 years in those capacities.
In 1990, when the then current sheriff retired, Larry was elected Isanti County Sheriff and served three terms (12 years) before ending his 31-year law enforcement career. He continued on in public service, however. In 2002, Larry was elected to the County Board and served as 2nd District Commissioner for over 12 years.
Larry embraced his role as an ombudsman county commissioner, immersing himself in his community work. He had a focus on transportation, public safety and job growth. He was a strong advocate for the multi-county NLX Passenger Rail Alliance Planning Committee, the Local Collaborative, the Isanti County Ag Society (Fair Board), the Braham Community Center and preservation of the historic St John’s Church. In 2004 Larry received the Isanti County Human Rights Award.
During his law enforcement career he was very involved: chairing the Advisory Board to the Lino Lakes Regional Treatment Center, serving as a District Director of the Minnesota Sheriffs’ Association, serving as president of the Sheriffs’ Youth Program of MN among his many activities.
He was well known as a charitable person and especially for establishing and operating the Sheriff Larry Southerland Celebrity Golf Tournament for over 10 years, bringing well known sports figures to the community to raise money on behalf of worthy causes. He was a member of Cambridge Lutheran Church, a member of the Grandy Lions, a past Commander of Post 290 of the Sons of the American Legion and a member of the Lone Eagle Auto Club.
County Commissioner Larry L. Southerland of Isanti County died March 19, 2014 at his Springvale Township home following a brief, but determined battle with cancer. He was preceded in death by his parents, Lyle and Lorraine Southerland and his sister, Lana Mattson and brother-in-law, Craig Mattson.
He is survived by his brother and sister in law, Lee and Donna Southerland and their children, Leah Southerland and Cindy (Matt) Boe; niece, Crystal Mattson; aunt, Deloris Anderson; uncle, LeRoy (Joanne) Anderson; cousins and other relatives; special friends, Cherri Carpenter and Jenny (Cory) Carlson.