Paul J. Leonard, age 83, of Carlos, died on Thursday, December 19, 2019, at his home.
A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m., Monday, December 23, 2019, at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Parkers Prairie with Rev. Kirk Lee officiating. Music is provided by organist, Maureen Diedrich. Interment will take place at Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Carlos. Full military honors accorded by the Minnesota Honor Guard, American Legion Post #87, Veteran of Foreign Wars Post #936, Vietnam Veterans of American Chapter #235, and the Marine Corps League Detachment #1409.
A visitation will take place 4-7 p.m., Sunday at Lind Family Funeral Home in Parkers Prairie and continue one hour prior to the service.
Paul James was born on March 30, 1936, to James and Frances (Lindahl) Leonard in Emerson, Nebraska. He was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith. Paul attended country school and graduated from Wayne High School in Wayne, Nebraska. He continued his education at Wayne State for two years. Paul was drafted into the U.S. Army and stationed in San Francisco, California. He served active duty for two years and reserve for four years. Paul was honorably discharged and returned to Nebraska to work for the Federal Bureau of Reclamation. His job moved him to South Dakota where he met the love of his life, Karen Kocourek. They were united in marriage on August 28, 1964, in Rapid City, South Dakota. They continued to live in South Dakota for a while before Paul’s job transferred them to California. He continued to work for the Federal Bureau of Reclamation, until he transitioned to a job working for the state of California as a concrete inspector on the California Aqueduct. They spent 10 years in California before moving to Carlos to purchase their farm. Paul’s main passion was farming, but also worked full-time at Hart Press in Long Prairie and as a rural mail carrier. Paul farmed full-time until his retirement. He was a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church and a member of the American Legion for over 50 years. Paul enjoyed reading, drawing, painting, cutting wood, “taking it easy” after retirement and spending time with his grandchildren. One of Paul’s favorite hobbies was gardening. He always planted a wide variety of plants and truly did it for pure enjoyment.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and son, Mark Leonard.
Paul is survived by his wife of 55 years, Karen; three children, John (Grace) Leonard of Cambridge, Wisconsin, Tim Leonard of Fergus Falls and Betsy Leonard of Seattle, Washington; two sisters, Billie Smith of Battle Lake and Joan Colligan of Harlan, Iowa; six grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Pallbearers are Brad Lusty, Richard Schlosser, Charles Leonard, Mark Hoar, Keith Colligan, and Balin Cooney.