Obituary: Leo Arenda, 98, Metamora

Staff Writer
Woodford Times

Leo Louis Arends, 98, of Metamora died Sunday, Aug. 19, 2012.

He was born on Dec. 31, 1913, on his parents’ farm in Linn Township, Woodford County, the son of Wilke F. and Minnie T. (Tjaden) Arends. He married Viola Mae Strauch on May 12, 1945, in El Paso, Texas. She preceded him in death on Aug. 9, 2004.

Leo was preceded in death by six brothers, Bill, John, Ed, Clarence, Carl and Henry; six sisters, Minnie Reiter, Etta Fischer, Catherine Kolb, Pearl Rassmussen, Dora Cochran and Florence Kolb; and one grandson.

He is survived by one son, Larry (Sally) Arends of Buffalo Grove; one daughter, Dianne (Mark) Gossick of Peoria; five grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

He entered the U.S. Army in June of 1941, and served with the 2nd Infantry Division in Ireland and Wales before entering France at Omaha Beach during the D-Day invasion of 1944. Arends fought, and was wounded, during the liberation of St. Lo, France, and once again at the Battle of the Bulge. He was awarded the Bronze Star, the Silver Star, two Purple Hearts, the Infantry Combat Badge and his Company received a Presidential Citation of Honor.

He was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Washburn and was also a member of the American Legion Post 661 in Washburn for 70 years.

Funeral services were Saturday at the Calvert & Johnson Memorial Home, 201 N. Jefferson St., Washburn, with visitation prior. The Rev. Bryan Hopfensperger officiated. Burial was in Linn Mount Vernon Cemetery in Washburn, where full military rites will be accorded by the Washburn American Legion.

Memorials may be made to the Methodist Hospice Service in Peoria.