Remembering Fallen Libertarians

Last May 22nd, a member in the libertarian community took his own life. Many of those who blog, read blogs or are on various Yahoo lists will know who I am talking about-Larry Fullmer aka “Libertarian Larry” from Idaho.

My wife, son and I met Larry in Atlanta during the LP National Convention. He, like us, were ardent Aaron Russo supporters. When we met Larry he reeked of whiskey and was rather belligerent. I remember the day after Michael Badnarik won the nomination, Larry came up to us and told us some things about Badnarik which caused many to re-think supporting Michael — us included.

There was a story I remember Larry telling us that even today stays fresh in my mind. Larry was telling us after he got back home how he slept on the streets of Atlanta for one night because he missed his plane. He mentioned that the shelters were packed that night and there was no where to stay. All he had was his cell phone and ten dollars in his pocket. He ran into a few homeless people and struck up a deal. They saw that he had a cell phone and for exchange they would allow him to sleep on cardboard. Larry said those homeless people were so grateful to talk to their families who they hadn’t talked to in months! He passionately concluded that he slept on the streets for Aaron Russo!

The purpose for writing this post was not just to remember Larry but to remember all Libertarians who have inspired us to continue with fighting against oppression and tyranny and fight for liberty and freedom. Let’s make May 22nd “Remember Our Fallen Libertarians” Day! If you have a fallen Libertarian you would like for us to remember share it in the comment box.

  1. Chris, thanks for the reminder.

    Btw a couple of links from your post include “http://http://”, which doesn’t work.

  2. Dane County in Wisconsin just lost its oldest member, Walter Menard, he was 97 years old.

    At LPDC meetings he used to talk about how he lived in Chicago during the Prohibition, gunfights on every corner.

    He used to say; “The Drug War, its the same thing!”

    At his funeral ceremony, I spoke to his family and friends about seeing him every month at Libertarian meetings for the past 11 years, up until a few years ago when his health started to fail. At a luncheon I was approached by dozens of his family who wanted to meet a Libertarian.

    Walter apparantly had been talking Libertarian Party philosophy to everyone he knew for decades.

    Here is his obit:

    Walter “Pop” John Menard, died at the Don and Marilyn Anderson HospiceCare Center on Easter Sunday, April 16, 2006, just a few days short of his 98th birthday.


    He was an active Libertarian

    All Libertarians in Dane County will miss Walter and his fighting for liberty!

  3. Here is a link to Libertarian activist Mal Iles

    Mal Iles was born in Cedar Rapids in 1954 and died unexpectedly in Ames in 1983 at the age of 28.


    He helped form an active Ames branch of the Libertarian Party, composed mostly of students. As Libertarian Party candidate Mal ran for State Representative from the 42nd District; he also attended the Libertarian National Convention as Iowa Delegate.

  4. Larry Fulmer was a thorn in my side at first when I was blogging in 2004, but he always listened and engaged rather than simply restate the same pition over and over again.

    He was also one of the few ( insert fucking dumb name here) libertarians that didnt demand I leave the LP – while he had major attitude and pottymouth :) he didnt think the LP was better off not having people like me in it. We exhanged many emails and in th end we were no longer enemies. He understood want I was doing and didnt consider it blasphemous, and I admired a man that could stick to his guns and yet see that I had something to offer.

    His last email to me was a typical rant about topics of the day but he did express 2 things – first, that he wished that everyone would understand that “VOTER EDUCATION” about the LP was not the primary goal of the party, and that doing so harms the party. He was all for libertarians getting elected, but he didnt come to that position until we had our year and a half battle.

  5. Teh second thing was that he had 3 boxes of extremely early records of the LP including stuff that is probably one of a kind and that he wanted to send me copies of some of it, stuff going back as far as 71. Never got it, and I think the party should make a inquiry to the family to see if this can be located as history once lost is gone long with the wisdom it contains.

  6. I was just thinking about Larry, actually…

    He was an awesome guy. Like everyone said, very much a hardliner but he had a lot to offer back in the days of The New Libertarian. I remember that he and I once ended up having a very productive debate about air pollution on TNL. But he went out the way he lived… on his own terms. Larry, you’re sorely missed by your party.

    *raises a glass in Larry’s honor*

  7. “When we met Larry he reeked of whiskey and was rather belligerent.”

    That was Larry. I can’t remember the number of phone calls I got at two in the morning … “(hic) … GODDAMMIT, Tom!”

    I miss him.

  8. Met Larry some years ago while living in Idaho.
    He was always fun.
    He is missed.

  9. While I knew of Larry, I, too, first met him coming into the convention hotel in Atlanta in ’04. Tom and I were loaded down with the accoutrements of kids (suitcases, coolers & boxes of food), and Larry kindly relieved us of some of our load. (He jokingly said that the price for his assistance would be our votes for Russo, but that was a lock anyway.)

    I took some of those late night calls to which Tom refers, and I was very saddened to hear that Larry was no longer in our world. I wished, and still wish, that there was something I could have done or said. But Larry was indubitably his own person.

    Besides the obvious (Peter McWilliams), I’d also like to mention Karl Wetzel of the MO LP, who passed away suddenly several years ago. Karl was a stalwart libertarian who in his life always spread the word of liberty and in his death bequeathed no small amount of money to the state party. He, too, is missed.


  10. Interesting link on the ’04 campaign. I had seen Badnarik’s website shortly before they changed it to the uncontroversial LP presidential candidate version, and it was scary. Because of it, I voted straight Libertarian with the exception of president – where I voted John Kerry. At least if I’m going to vote with someone I disagree with, it should be A) someone who has a chance to win, and B) someone who doesn’t think chaining prisoners to their bed is appropriate.

    I would have voted for Nolan, and probably Russo, however, I wasn’t aware of the campaign spending issues Browne/Nolan had.

    Kind of disheartening that even the LP has all the corruption/mudslinging issues of the larger parties. How can we claim to offer a better solution when we’re doing the same shit while still drastically smaller in size?

  11. Well…

    I’m always sad to see someone succumb to the deep end. I try to keep forever in mind that there’s a core of decency within the worst of us, so it’s easy to forgive the merely lost.

    I met Larry once, on the evening under discussion in Atlanta. He was drunk and arrempted to attack Badnarik physically. I and another friend of Michael caught and restrained him, pulled him off to the hallway near the banquet room and kept him there until he had settled down a bit and Michael was well away. We’ve only mentioned this privately to a few close associates until now, but I feel compelled to point out the reality of your great crusader for the truth.

    Just as I feel compelled to ask so many of you to get a sense of humor. It’s a sad day when people of our supposed caliber immediately accept without question the darkest of rumors and misrepresentations about each other.

    RIP, Larry; your tortured soul deserves the break.


  12. My grandfather died August 19 last year. He was the man who introduced me to Rand, Objectivism, Libertarianism…

    I keep two things from him in the LPGeorgia office next to my desk. One is a large copy of the front cover picture from “Miracle on Main Street” that a friend of his wrote… and the other is a piece of paper in his hand writing that’s the Statement of Principles… under which he wrote “Pure, Simple, Common Law.”

    There’s not a day gone by that I don’t want to call him to ask his opinion…

  13. … and George Mussman, former libertarian mayor of O’Fallon, Missouri. He brought a wealth of organizational skill to the Missouri LP, starting with how to run a meeting with an agenda instead of a time-unlimited whinefest.