Typically, a person is only supposed to say good things of the dead. But in the case of Lawrence Pfaff Sr., the tone of his obituary seems to be “Good thing he’s dead.”
The obituary, published in The Florida Times-Union over the holiday weekend, describes the late Pfaff, 81, as “narcissistic” and an “abusive alcoholic” whose death proves that “evil does eventually die.”
The angry obit was written by Pfaff’s son Larry Pfaff Jr., who didn’t pull any punches:
[Pfaff] is survived by his three children, no four. Oops, five children. Well as of 2022 we believe there is one more that we know about, but there could be more. His love was abundant when it came to himself, but for his children it was limited. From a young age, he was a ladies’ man and an abusive alcoholic, solidifying his commitment to both with the path of destruction he left behind, damaging his adult children, and leaving them broken.
The obit says that Pfaff spent more than 20 years working for the New York Police Department, but “because of his alcohol addiction, his Commanding Officer took away his gun and badge, replacing them with a broom until he could get his act together.”
A spokesperson for the NYPD did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for comment Wednesday.
Pfaff Jr., 58, also writes that his father’s “hobbies” included “abusing his first wife,” and that he “possesses no redeeming qualities for his children, including the ones he knew, and the ‘ones he knew about.’”
He told the Times-Union that his dad left the family when he was 9, had several more children with various women, and abandoned them as well.
In fact, Pfaff Jr. has only been able to connect with many of his brothers and sisters by doing DNA research.
Pfaff Jr. told First Coast News that he actually started writing the obit a year ago, while his father was still alive, as “a way for me to really cleanse myself and let that part of my life go.”
He then sat on the piece until his dad died June 27.
The Times-Union notes that Larry’s sister Carolyn Compton “grew up in the same household” as him and “confirmed Pfaff’s account of their father.”
Pfaff Jr. said people have reached out to thank him for being honest about his deceased parent.
“I got a call from somebody in St. Augustine that found me and wanted to thank me for posting that because, you know, they had a similar life, and they wanted to be able to do something similar to help heal,” he said. “They just thanked me for, you know, the honesty.”
But the obit isn’t getting much love from Gannett, the company that owns the Times-Union.
A company spokesperson told First Coast News that “we regrettably published an obituary that did not adhere to our guidelines and we are looking into the matter further. We regret any distress this may have caused.”
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story misstated the outlet to which Pfaff made some of his comments. It was First Coast News, not The Florida Times-Union.
Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.