Larry James Neff was born and raised in Bethlehem, PA, and worked at Bethlehem Steel from 1972 until the plant closed in 1999.
Larry was the son of a steelworker, had two older brothers who were steelworkers, and had a brother-in-law who was a steelworker. Thus it was natural that despite several early job detours, he became a steelworker too. Larry joined the ranks of Bethlehem Steel employees in 1972, and became a rigger in 1975. The rigger crews in the Steel Company did the jobs that were deemed too high, too hard, or too dangerous for other departments to handle. They also had a reputation for being somewhat crazy, but able to get the job done. Larry fit right in due to his love of climbing and heights, as well as a strong attraction to explosions and the ability to pick locks.
He was inspired to write his memoir, "Rigger: a memoir from high school to high steel" out of a desire to present an honest and uncensored view of what it was like to work in the Bethlehem plant on a daily basis.
Larry is the father of two sons, Jared and Adam. He still lives in Bethlehem, and still loves hiking and climbing. While retired now, he is busy working on his second book as well as being the chief administrator of his Facebook group "Bethlehem Steelworkers Families and Friends" which currently has more than 1,000 members. He also enjoys speaking to groups about his book and about the daily life of a steelworker.