In Memory


Larry Berg

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01/14/21 08:26 AM #15    

Charlotte Kinney

In addition to all the "spot on" comments about Larry's strength, fortitude and positive attitude under extreme circumstances, I want to spotlight what a great swimmer he was. We were neighbors growing up and both competed with the Acapulco Swim Team (as did Phil Ramsey, Carol Vespe and many other future Hornets). We often shared rides (along with his sister Rosemary) to our twice a day summer workouts. I will always remember him standing tall and proud, ready for the next race. He lived his entire life that way, elooking forward to what came next.  Rest in peace Larry.

01/14/21 11:58 AM #16    

David Roberts

TRIBUTE TO LARRY BERG (from one of his trading partners on the CBOT)

Monday January 11, 2021

Nothing makes me any more qualified than the next guy to talk about automobile mechanics or auto racing just as nothing makes me any more qualified to talk about soy meal futures trading than a guy who could do crush computations and butterflies in his head on the fly. On the contrary, it makes me a kindergarten-er compared to a PhD.

But even if I wasn’t a person masquerading as an agricultural futures contract trading afficionado for 24 and a half years down at the CBOT still doesn’t make me any less of a person than anyone else there. As I say, except for a few who were head and shoulders above the rest – for whatever reason.

In my time I saw guys with wads of bills that could choke a horse standing around giving their minions hundred dollar bills to buy packs of gum for a dollar at the newspaper stand. I saw guys who came around the outside of the building looking like they hadn’t washed or changed clothes in days asking for something to get them through their day or asking for something to eat. And I saw guys do complex math equations in their heads like you or I breathe.

When Larry Berg came back to the CBOT for his second run at trading soymeal futures he needed, “the wolfman” to be his eyes and hands in the trading pit.

We just lost Larry this week.

I can safely say in the time I knew him before he lit out for the wide open spaces of Montana – only to return after a unreasonable amount of time, say fifteen years, (for the sake of this story) – Larry was one of the coolest brokers I had ever met or had the privilege of knowing in my time in the ag pits downtown.

1987. October. I left Continental Grain to check futures trades for Central Soya before and after the trade day and to run, answer phones and collect, “players” during the business day in the trading pits. I see this guy with a blonde, curly mullet in the back months trading soymeal futures and say to my supervisor, “That’s our back months guy?” To which he replied somethng to the effect of, “A mathematical Robert Plant!”

One day, after I had heard what I heard was just about every story you could think of having to do with Larry and after extensively checking his, Chuck Wasserman’s and Eddie Newman’s trades and watching these guys trade during the ag trading day for months and months, the bell rings. The pit clears out and there’s Larry, hanging out one day.

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“Your boss? Ed? Huge with the options? Vast knowledge, I’m told.”

“That’s what I hear, Lar’.”

“I have a lot of respect for those options guys, sheez! That shit’s tough.”

“I know. Talk to him. I’m sure he would share insights. Hell, you have INSIGHT!”

Larry stood between and was a part of the back months soymeal futures traders gang. He was one of those guys who traded uniquely, mathematically and had a demeanor all his own. And I told you I watched. And listened.

If you were hung. Larry could slowly close his eyes, turn his head like the 10 other guys around him and say something mathematically profound like, “You know the Jan March you just bit the big one on? Do the July Aug or Aug Sep here and just unwind it at like say, twelve thirty and tell me you didn’t cover. Or did better”

And I’d sit there as I was listening and go, “Huh?”

Other times before Larry’s second stint in meal during the late eighties I cannot tell you how many times I saw the entire meal pit rush him when he’d yell out, “JULYAUGUST, I’LL DO BOATLOADSATSEVENTY!” or something like that. Like ants on Redbull attracted to honey they’d rush him all at once. “SOOOOOOOOLD!!!! THREE HUNDRED!”


Bumping Larry in the chest whose arms were outstretched in the air. Chest to chest nodding, one hand holding a pen or pencil, the other holding his orders and cardboard trading cards – high above his head – in the shape of a V. 

Or conversely, some trader screeching, “OCTDECSIXTYFORPLENTY!!!” And there’s Larry,


And then being rushed again chests bumping. No writing. Nodding. Looking each of his colleagues that had just rushed him – intensely – in the eye. Nodding. No writing.

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The next morning his poor trade checker with forty pages of unmatched trades, sweating like a dirty dog, looking up for some direction as Larry strolls over at 9AM and 27 and a half minutes minutes (two and a half minutes before opening bell). It’s as if everyone who was in to Larry during the trade checking session were watching for when Larry would turn the corner or come off the elevator or approach the trade checking tables each and every morning.

“Pick it all up. Card it.”, he’d put a hand on his trade checker’s shoulder.

1987? 1988? 1989? Something like that. Any one of those years and others.

This is the way one did business back in the day when integrity was everything. When your word was your bond. When you didn’t open your mouth to say anything unless you meant it.

Where I learned integrity. And that you can’t judge a book by it’s cover. And how some guy’s minds are like those things. You know. Those things. The wooden frames thingies with the beads? An abacus! (The reason I was a watcher and listener, I guess.)

I learned a few things from guys like, “a mathematical Robert Plant”. Guys like Larry.

And others.

Some of them, gone now.

But never, ever EVER forgotten.

Rest in peace, Larry.

You’re a tough act to follow and you’ll never be forgotten.


01/14/21 01:38 PM #17    

Jack Groves

They broke the mold after this guy was made; always tried to give him a laugh after he returned to ABQ. Went Hawaiian theme at his birthday 5 years ago from the HHS guys with his official personal "Lei", and Wham-o Sticks for twins Jack and Coco. A fellow ME, he could talk about mechanical engineering, and also complex non-recourse project financing with me; just a brilliant individual. His strength fighting this terrible disease was legendary. RIP, Larry Berg.

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01/14/21 05:18 PM #18    

David Arken

Larry and I were not friends, acquantces yes, our circles did not really intersect in HHS except for classes. The thing I can say about him is he treated me with respectl, we talked in class, before and after chemistry and he revieled himself in some personal ways as I did to him. He was a bright spot for me at HHS at a time when my life was mostly dark, and I'm sorry he is gone and that he had such a difficult time for the past few years. Thank you larry for the kindness you showed me.

01/15/21 02:04 AM #19    

Barbara Boyden (Walters)

I cannot begin to match the eloquence and heartfelt sentiments of the posts I have read about Larry Berg and his passing..  I can say, from the moment I became aware of him at HHS,   mostly related to his athletic ability  and easygoing style, I admired him.  I was especially glad to see him at our 50th reunion with that great smile of his. I will remember him fondly.



01/15/21 02:52 PM #20    

Jonathan Mayhew

I’ve known Larry since I was ten, one of a group of overly active teens and preteens running rampant at the old Acapulco Swim Club.  Larry, of course, was our alfa male, but a particularly benevolent one.  I never knew him to be mean or act the bully, but rather was one of our leaders as we did things on a daily basis that would get you banned from any pool in this more uptight era.  Not that we did anything too bad and nobody ever got hurt, but I’m sure our games disrupted the peace of many other patrons and we laughingly claimed we ruled the place.

As Charlotte has pointed out, Larry was a good competitive swimmer, While at HHS, he chose to concentrate on Football and Basketball, in our senior year, we on the swim, team prevailed upon Larry to swim in the State Championships.  Despite not being in top swimming shape, he was part of the state record setting medley relay and was a close second in the 100 yard backstroke where it took a state record performance to beat him.  He was a true athlete.  We went down our separate paths after HHS, but kept sporadically in touch through reunions, e-mails and mutual friends.  I always admired him, but his good humor and high spirits while fighting this awful disease only increased my admiration.  He was truly courageous person and a lesson to us all as we face our own trials and tribulations.

Rest in peace my friend, and thanks for all the memories.

01/15/21 08:50 PM #21    

Jack D'Ambrosio

Larry Berg's passing was nothing less than the day THE hornet died.

01/16/21 08:58 PM #22    

Joe Fiorillo

I knew Larry Berg as an extraordinary athlete in both football and basketball. He was the role model for me having just arrived from Italy. Not only was he an athlete but was a model of integrity, excellence and humor. Larry played the left end of the offensive line and was blessed with great hands, great speed and awesome agility. On defense, as a defensive back few teams passed into his area. His excellence, character and determination resulted in a US naval academy appointment which was notable given the high standards of military schools. Congenial and welcoming, he made my entry into HHS comfortable and enjoyable, no small task given that HHS was populated with 3300 student in three classes. I Will always remember his sense of humor and superb athletic feats under the pressure of sports. God bless and welcome him.

01/23/21 02:01 PM #23    

Charlie Lujan

Larry,the first time i met you i knew you were a good guy.they got you up in heaven now with all the other class mates.If i want to see you again i'll have to be good.I don't have to put a rose by your name that shows what kind of man you were.My prayers are with you and the the family.

01/25/21 01:27 PM #24    

Jack Groves

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