EYOTA, Minn. (KTTC) -- A family and the community are grieving after losing a man who left his mark on nearly everyone he met.
Larry Petit died Sunday, Sept. 2 after battling cancer.
It was only in May that he was diagnosed with bone cancer. In June, doctors found a tumor in his esophagus, and he was given a year or less to live.
Larry declined treatment to instead live life to the fullest, and talking to his family, it's clear he not only did that but filled the lives of those that knew him.
"He loved music," said his sister Rita Schultz. "He loved song. He had a passion."
A member of the Booker Mini Band and Foundation, Larry lived a life of giving back.
"He sang with all his heart too," said his son Adam Petit. "I never let any of that be reserved. He was always out there. He just had a heart of gold really. That's my Dad."
Through the foundation Larry provided money and support to countless families in southeastern Minnesota who faced life-threatening events and illnesses.
When he was diagnosed, Larry's family, band and foundation insisted on holding a fundraiser for him.
It was planned for Sunday, Sept. 8.
Larry helped plan it, from booking the bands to designing the T-shirts.
"We need to make sure that people understand that this is a party," said Larry's brother Mark Petit, describing Larry's reaction. "This is not a funeral. We're having a party."
He fully intended to be there. Larry may have passed away on Sept 2, but he really lived until the very end.
"He played Friday night down at Mac's Park Place," Mark said. "He wasn't feeling all that well, but he sat down and he sang and sang and played."
Larry sang his heart out when he performed, and he used to say he left a part of it on stage.
So even though he's gone now, there's a piece of him left on every stage and in every venue he played.
The fundraiser was still held Sunday from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Wicked Moose in Rochester.
A CD of Larry's music was available and many of the bands he performed with took the stage, as well.
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