Leonard J. Staysniak, 91, of Elyria Township, went home to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, on the evening of June 24, 2013, while a resident of the Stein Hospice Center, following a very brief illness. He was born, the second of four children, April 20, 1922 in Grafton. Orphaned in his early teens, he delivered newspapers and did odd jobs to earn money to help keep the family together during the Depression years. He graduated from Elyria High School and managed to complete a year of college.
In September of 1942, he was drafted into the U.S. Army. Prior to his departure in the fall of that year, he married the love of his life, Anna Karamarkovich, in January 1943.
During World War II, he served in the European Theatre as a Sergeant Major assigned to First Army Headquarters in Bristol England (1944). He fought in the battles of Normandy (D-Day), Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes and in Central Europe. He was wounded in action on Christmas Day of 1944 in Herbstahl, Germany. He was the recipient of the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, the Good Conduct Medal, and the European African Middle Eastern Service Medal with five Bronze Stars.
After returning from the war, he resided in Lorain for a number of years before moving to Elyria Township in the fall of 1962, where he resided until the time of his death.
He was employed as a General Turn Foreman at U.S. Steel Corporation’s Lorain-Cuyahoga Works and retired in 1978. He was a long time member of Church of the Open Door in Elyria and was active during the early years of the Elyria Baptist Church’s Jolly 60’s program. He was also a life member of Elyria VFW Post #1079.
For many years, Leonard was a frequent contributor to the Letters to the Editor sections of both local newspapers and was active in Elyria Township issues. He was an avid gardener who also enjoyed watching baseball, basketball and who had actively followed his nephew’s collegiate and professional football career.
Leonard is survived by his son, Dennis of Elyria Township; sister-in-law, Beverly Staysniak; and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years, Anna, "Dolly" (nee Karamarkovich); his parents, Joseph and Constance (nee Nowaczyk); brothers, Harold and Floyd; and his sister, Irene (Wissinger).
Friends will be received Saturday, June 29, 2013, from 2 until 6 P.M., in the Gluvna-Shimo-Hromada Funeral Chapel, 3224 Broadway Ave., Lorain. Funeral services will be Monday, July 1, 2013, at 11 A.M., in the funeral chapel. The Reverend Dale Staysniak, Pastor of St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church, in Parma, will officiate. Interment will follow in Ridge Hill Memorial Park, Amherst Township where military honors will be conducted by V.F.W. Post # 1079.
In lieu of flowers, the family encourages memorial contributions, in Leonard’s name, to the Lucy Idol Center for the Handicapped, P.O. Box 162, Vermilion, OH 44089.