Larry Alex Taunton
Larry Alex Taunton is an award-winning author, freelance columnist, and producer. For better or for worse, he is a man with a reputation. An “Army brat,” Larry was born at Fort Benning, Georgia and was stationed at a number of other places beginning with the word “Fort” before he was a teenager. The military life of moving from one base to another suited Larry and engendered in him a restlessness that has never left him. With a mother from Vancouver Island, Canada and his father a native of L.A.—“Lower Alabama” in the vernacular—he grew up a child of both worlds. Larry’s Canadian grandparents saw themselves as subjects of the British Crown and regarded American independence with some suspicion; his American grandparents worked in the cotton mills and told old family stories of the Civil War and the “Yankee occupation.” Such an upbringing was seldom boring and made for a diversity of perspectives— a composite of “God Save the Queen” and “Dixie,” Sir Walter Scott and William Faulkner—or “crumpets and grits,” as Larry says. The interplay between his heritage on his mother’s side and that of his father’s side would become a theme in his life. He was never fully one or the other. Larry was at once an Anglophile like his Canadian grandfather and an American patriot in keeping with the accepted orthodoxy on his father’s side. But it was from his Irish maternal grandmother, who, at 19, had boarded a ship in Belfast bound for the New World never to return, that he inherited his resolve and stubbornness. Though only five-feet tall, rebar ran straight through her tiny frame. Playing cards like a professional gambler—she wintered in Reno, Nevada for a reason—she taught Larry that it is wise to conceal one’s strength, to never show your hand, and to always play to win.