ADRIAN - Dr. Lawrence K. Cox II, a past president of the local Kiwanis Club who ran a longtime dental practice in Adrian, died on Monday in his home of a heart attack. He was 71.
Dr. Cox's mantra was "work hard, play hard, and live life to its fullest," said his oldest son, Larry.
He said his father was passionate about his career and the community and was active in many aspects of dentistry and Adrian.
Dr. Cox's father, Lawrence, also was a dentist and built a reputation in the Adrian community.
The children of the younger Dr. Cox said that even though their father attended Culver Military Academy in Indiana and served in the Air Force, he never intended to live anywhere but Adrian.
"Dad had always planned to come home," said son Stephen. "He went out to get his education and served in the military, but he had no other ambition than to come home and practice dentistry in his hometown. There was always something about this town that no matter where he traveled - and he traveled nationally and internationally - he still loved to be in Adrian."
Dr. Cox's daughter, Laura Brudzinski, said her father credited his time at the military school for providing a foundation that he carried with him the rest of his life.
"He said that is what changed his life," Mrs. Brudzinski said. "It gave him direction and changed him to be the person he was in his later years."
Dr. Cox graduated from the military school in 1955 and Albion College in 1959. He studied dentistry at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Dentistry, graduating in 1963.
He served two years in the Air Force in Marquette, Mich., serving as captain in the medical services.
Dr. Cox returned to Adrian in 1965 and opened his practice. He also became involved in numerous organizations, including the Adrian Kiwanis Club, of which he was president and was honored as Kiwanian of the Year in 1975.
He was also involved in the American Legion and numerous professional organizations.
He taught at the Lenawee County Vocational Technical School, U.S. Dental Institute, and the Alabama School of Dentistry.
Surviving are his wife, Joan; sons, Larry and Stephen; daughter, Laura Brudzinski; brothers, William and Charles, and four grandchildren.
The body will be in the Wagley Funeral Home, Adrian, after 2 p.m. today. Services will begin at 11 a.m. tomorrow in the funeral home.
The family suggests tributes to the Academy of Dentistry International Foundation or the Hospice of Lenawee.