Leo S. Steinke, 90, died at 3:43 p.m. Monday, Aug. 20, 2012, at Dorothy Love Retirement Community, 3003 W. Cisco Road, Sidney.
He was born March 2, 1922, in Fryburg, the son of Cecelia (Frankenberg) and Ferd Steinke, who are deceased. On Nov. 20, 1946, he married Mary Catherine Dunn on November 20, 1946, and she passed away in 1991.
Surviving are a daughter, Karen (Brian) Mehrbrodt, of Bowling Green, Ill.; two grandchildren, Lauren Mehrbrodt and Corbin Mehrbrodt; two sisters, Fredonia Staley, of Sidney, and Virginia (Richard) Burden, of Botkins; and two brothers, Albin Steinke, of Fryburg, and Don Steinke, of Sidney.
He was preceded in death by three sisters, Martha Holthaus, Delores Schaub and Marie Steinke; and two brothers, Eugene Steinke and Nester Steinke.
He attended St. Joseph Catholic School in Wapakoneta and then moved to Botkins and graduated from high school there in 1940. He then began working for the B & O Railroad for 42 years. He left only to serve in the United States Army in World War II where he served from 1942-1945. He fought in both Africa and Italy and served under General Patton. He was able to visit the Vatican and got to shake hands with Pope Pius the XII. He was a member of the Sidney American Legion since 1946. Leo was devoutly involved in parish life at his church, Holy Angels Catholic Church in Sidney. He was affectionately known by many as â€śFather Leoâ€ť. A lifelong Catholic and longtime member of Holy Angels, he served as Lector since 1965 and trained new lectors for many years. He served as a Eucharistic Minister since 1973. He took communion to the hospital and local retirement homes. He counted the church collection every Monday. He helped as a leading fundraiser when the church was renovated. He was very involved in the Knights of Columbus in Sidney. He joined the Knights of Columbus in 1941 and was a current member of the Sidney Council 659. He earned his 4th degree around 1983. He served as financial secretary for 39 years; served as District Deputy for four years, with responsibility for four councils; served as Grand Knight for two terms; served as Trustee for three terms; currently served on Sidney Council First Degree team; previously served on a Second Degree team; currently served on the Sidney Council Third Degree team and traveled throughout the state and to both Indiana and Kentucky; lead the council prayer service when a member passed away; served on many Honor Guards, including for the Bishop; walked many parades with 4th degree, including the recent Corpus Christi parade; stood guard for other 4th degree membersâ€™ funeral services; stood guard for 3rd degree members funeral services; worked nearly every fish fry since Council 659 started more than 20 years ago; coordinated annual Knights of Columbus sponsored Living Rosary at Holy Angels; served as the long-term chair on Council 659â€™s Measure-Up Charity Campaign and raised thousands of dollars over the years, including over $2400 in 2010; attended many state conventions; coordinated fellow Knights for Holy Angels Parish Picnic Bingo; was the current namesake of the â€śLeo Steinke Lifetime Achievementâ€ť Award that was created 10 years ago by the Sidney Council 659 to honor a highly active member; he was a strong supporter of Lehman Catholic High School; sold tickets at Lehman Catholic High School football/basketball games since 1970; called bingo at the school for 30 years; was President of Lehman Catholic High School Athletics Boosters for more than 20 years; was a fundraiser leader for Lehman Catholic High School building addition; was inducted to the Lehman Hall of Fame in 2011; worked the election polls for many years; started and coordinated â€śThe Digger Oâ€™Dellâ€ť crew of pallbearers for those in need and coordinated an annual community blood drive.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at Holy Angels Catholic Church in Sidney, with the Rev. Daniel Hess officiating. Burial with full military honors will follow at Graceland Cemetery in Sidney.
Friends may call from 2 to 5 and 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at Salm-McGill and Tangeman Funeral Home in Sidney. A Knights of Columbus 3rd Degree service will be held at the funeral home at 6:45 p.m. and a Knights of Columbus 4th Degree service will be held at the funeral home at 7:45 p.m.
Contributions may be made to the Lehman Scholarship Fund, 2400 St. Maryâ€™s Rd., Sidney, 45365.
Condolences may be expressed at salm-mcgillandtangemanfh.com.
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