Lawrence William Saling – The Owensboro Times

Lawrence William Saling (Larry, also known as The Willowman) died Friday August 5, 2022 at Owensboro Health Regional Hospital in Owensboro, Kentucky. He was 67 years old.
Throughout his life, Larry marched to the beat of his own drum. He was fierce about being authentic himself and resisted anyone who tried to mold him into something different.
From childhood, Larry was most comfortable in nature. He was a Boy Scout and reveled in the outdoor experiences it provided, including camping, hiking, tree climbing, fire building, and orienteering.
With his expressive and infectious personality, he had many friends throughout his teenage years. He developed a strong love of music and was never afraid to take up dancing almost anywhere if the music moved him, even in his later years. Larry also expressed his unique and fashion-forward style in the way he dressed, which he pulled off with joy and ease.
After high school, he earned an Associate of Commerce degree from Sullivan University in Louisville.
In early adulthood he began to write poetry, which he continued to do throughout his life. He was enchanted by words as a means of expressing emotions and he always had a love of language.
He also played soccer as a young adult. Even though he was small, he was powerful and known in the league as the fiercest goalie around.
His expressiveness continued to develop in many artistic ways. He started painting and creating art from found or discarded materials and objects from nature. He created furniture and works of art using willows he found along the roads and in the woods. His nickname became “The Willowman” due to the wide range of artwork and furniture he created from willow. He also carved and created unique walking sticks, even using the shavings left on the ground to create new works of art. He was known to cover almost every inch of the walls and ceilings of his residences with his art, making a visit to his home like an art museum.
Over the years, he has blessed many people with gifts of his art and poetry, including his parents, nine siblings, 20 nieces and nephews, and 25 great-nieces and nephews.
Larry was predeceased by his parents, June Marie (Clements) Saling and James Elmer Saling. He is survived by his nine siblings, Paula Skiles (Steve), Rick Saling, Karen Lasley (George, deceased), Jay Saling (Linda), Ellen Saling Linton (Gene), Dean Saling (Reanna), Kenneth Saling ( Ruth), Robert Saling (Amy) and Joe Saling (Jenny).
Arrangements are underway for a celebration of Larry’s life. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Kentucky/West Virginia Chapter, click here to donate.
Haley McGinnis Funeral Home & Crematory is both honored and privileged to be entrusted with the care of Mr. Saling. Leave your condolence messages for the family of Lawrence William Saling and sign their virtual guestbook at

Dino J. Dotson