Earl T. Laird Jr.
Earl T. Laird Jr., “Earl T”, 74, a lifelong Carson City resident passed away Dec. 13, 2008 at home.
Earl was born March 7, 1934 in Stewart, Nevada at a private residence to Earl T. Laird Sr. and Fieatta (Fry) Laird. He was one of six children.
Earl was married to Nina (Richards) Barry from 1958-1973. He met the love of his life Ilse Chelius in 1980 and they spent twenty-eight years together until his passing.
Earl spent his entire childhood living in employee housing at Stewart Indian School. Earl was the senior class president at Carson High School. He played high school sports football, basketball and excelled in track and field. He held the record in the one mile run for 10 years and was member of the state champion track team in 1952. Earl was very active in the local marching band scene playing the trumpet. He played for the Carson High School marching band and for the Stewart Indian School marching band at the same time, which was quite the controversy at the time. He graduated from Carson High School in 1952, and then went on to attend the University of Nevada Reno.
Earl’s first job was delivering newspapers for the Reno Evening Gazette. During high school he drove one of only two of the local school buses in Carson and spent his summers as a caddy at the Glenbrook Golf Course in Lake Tahoe. After college he joined the National Guard, where he achieved the level of Sergeant and then enlisted as an officer in the Army for two years. He worked for Bill Harrah at Harrah’s Casino in South Lake Tahoe in the Safety and Traffic Management Department before beginning his thirty-year career at the Nevada Department of Transportation, retiring in 1988. He was nationally recognized as an expert in the field of traffic management and served as a consultant for various government contractors for several years after retiring. Earl and his son Kevin owned and operated Kevin’s Ski and Sports for seven years.
Earl instructed and chaperoned for the Carson City Ski Program, and also coached various local Little League teams.
He was an avid golfer and well known in the golfing community. He served as president for the local men’s golf club and on several golf committees and boards. He also enjoyed skiing, backpacking, dinning out and traveling in his RV.
Earl is survived by his friend and companion of 28 years, Ilse Chelius; son Kevin Laird; son Roger Laird; wife Kimberly and two grandchildren Tanner and Taylor, all of Carson City; Toni Simone (Eric), of Texas, Shawn Chelius (Laura) of Illinois, and Jason Chelius (Melissa) of Nevada, and seven grandchildren for whom he was lovingly referred to as Papa Earl; brothers Ivan Laird and Roger Laird; twin sister Merle Howard; sister Patricia Kelly and countless nieces and nephews. He also leaves behind his beloved Jack Russell Terrier Buffie.
Earl was preceded in death by his father Earl Sr., his mother Fieatta and sister Louise.
There will be a “Celebration of Life Party” held at Thurman’s Ranch House in Carson City 6 p.m., Jan. 10 until the last Manhattan is poured! Family and Friends are cordially invited. Please RSVP by Jan. 5 to Rogerlaird@gmail.com For more information call 775-884-2449
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Earl T. Laird Scholarship Fund at any Wells Fargo Bank branch. Acct. # 8760411242.
He was deeply loved by many and he will be missed by all the people he touched.