Sunday, May 21, 2017
2:00 PM EDT
Gun River Conservation Club
689 11th St
Plainwell, MI 49080
Life Story / Obituary
“When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.”
Born during a time of despair and raised in a time of reformation and hope, Albert (Abbey) Lawrie lived a heart centered life firmly rooted in gratitude and generosity. A proud Scotsman and grateful American, Albert cherished his Scottish roots while embracing the opportunities America provided him. Living fully into the meaning of the name his parents so wisely gave him, Albert was indeed both Noble and Bright. With tremendous honor and integrity, Albert shined brightly inspiring all who were blessed to share his life to live fully and celebrate each day’s blessings. Without a doubt, Albert’s warm light will be deeply missed while his memory proves a treasure for many.
Despite the chaos, destruction, and fear imposed by WWII, James Alexander and Alastaireen (Roberts) Lawrie of Aberdeen, Scotland celebrated their hopes for the future with the welcomed birth of their son Albert on August 3, 1941.
Albert was born during WWII and brought up during the war and post-war austerity, He and his family lived during a time when people put up with more and made do with less than we in the 21st century can ever imagine. Vague memories of his mother taking him to the bomb shelter during the raids were balanced with the fond memories of growing up in Aberdeen, and in Northfield after the war, with the good company of his siblings James and Wendy. As a child, he enjoyed days spent on his bicycle, adventuring by motorbike, and participating in the church Boys Brigade. While participating in the brigade, Albert even had the privilege of meeting England’s Queen Mother. A gregarious and welcoming lad, He made friends quickly and often kept them for life. Albert’s happy childhood proved the firm foundation for a life well lived.
While attending one of the many dances Albert enjoyed, he met his first wife, Cathleen. Soon after marrying in October 10, 1959, the happy couple welcomed their son Peter. Daughter Patricia soon followed and many busy days centered around the children began. Albert and Cathleen raised their children in Scotland and Ireland. Educated in Scotland, Albert supported his family by working as a Textile Engineer in several woolen mills in the United Kingdom and Ireland. In 1984 as Peter and Patricia entered adulthood, Albert was offered a position to work in America for Forte' Cashmere of Woonsocket, RI. He and Cathleen set out for adventure and moved to America. Unfortunately, 10 years after the move Cathleen became sick with cancer and passed away in 1995.
Leaning into his inherent gift for finding the blessings in each day as well as the support of his family and friends, Albert continued to embrace each day fully. His work also afforded comfort, structure, and purpose. Over the course of his career in the textile industry, Albert ran woolen mills and cashmere processing factories in Rhode Island, Vermont, Georgia, Belgium and outer Mongolia. Not only was Albert an enthusiastic world traveler, he also loved golf centered adventures. His love of golf began during his days in Ireland and provided him companionship, and joy throughout his life. Except when he hit a poor shot! Many had the opportunity to golf with Albert have seen him not very "joyful" on the golf course!
During his travels to Beijing, China in May 1996 Albert was gifted the good fortune of meeting his second wife, Jean. The two married in Woonsocket, R.I. on September 25, 1998, and enjoyed many years together often traveling Europe, Asia and the U.S. Albert loved traveling to new places with Jean and visiting his many lifelong friends throughout the world. Although he enjoyed the adventure of travel, he was always happy to return home. He always claimed his bed at home was better than any hotel bed he'd ever slept in.
With profound honor, Albert became a proud US citizen on September 23, 2002. Though always quick to express his love for Scotland and his rich Scottish heritage, Albert relished in the opportunities he was afforded by life in America. Albert’s greatest pride and joy was the privilege of being a father and grandfather. A devoted family man, He supported his loved ones in all their endeavors and often provided safe harbor during life’s storms. Albert never hesitated to offer his assistance, words of encouragement, and pride in the people he loved.
A man who never met a stranger, Albert had a natural gift for welcoming others and sharing time in a meaningful way. Whether during a brief encounter with a store clerk or celebrating the important accomplishments of his family and friends, Albert made people feel comfortable, valued, and grateful for his love and acceptance. He understood fully that we get what we give and he was unhesitatingly willing to give anything and everything he had in support of those he loved and strangers alike.
The world is truly duller without Albert’s bright light. May the memories of Albert’s zest for life and love of people afford deep comfort as well as spark a desire to expand our own hearts and lives. For each time we give of ourselves freely not only will we be present to Albert’s great love for us, but we will be living the treasure of his beautiful legacy and keeping his flame alive in our own daily lives.
Albert, age 75, passed away after a courageous battle against cancer, on April 20, 2017, at home with his wife by his side. Albert was born August 3, 1941, in Aberdeen, Scotland.
Albert is survived by his wife, Jean; his son, Peter Lawrie (Grainne) of Aberdeen, Scotland; his daughter, Patricia MacLeod (Alec) of Almeria, Spain; a brother, James Lawrie (Sheila) of Aberdeen, Scotland; a sister, Wendy Anderson of Inverurie, Scotland; his mother-in-law, Ada Ernst; two grandsons, Gavin Lawrie (Lynsey) of Aberdeen Scotland, Oisin Lawrie (Lynn) of Tarves, Scotland; a great-granddaughter, Erin Lawrie, and was anxiously awaiting the arrival of a second great grandchild who is due May 13, 2017, and with several nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, James and Aliestereen Lawrie; first wife, Cathleen, who was the mother of his children; a brother-in-law, Gary Anderson; and his father-in-law, Frank Ernst. A Celebration of Life will be held May 21, 2017, at the Gun River Conservation Club in Plainwell, Michigan at 2:00 p.m. A second Celebration of Albert’s life will be held in Aberdeen, Scotland at a future date. Albert was a very generous man. In lieu of flowers honor Albert by making a contribution to a charity of your choice or consider doing a random act of kindness to the many needy people of this world. Use your imagination!