Fishing 14

James E. Leonard

July 29, 1930 ~ December 17, 2019 (age 89)

Obituary Image

Obituary

James Edward Leonard, Jim was born July 29, 1930 in Waltham, MA to the late Marion (Kelly) and Edward Leonard, passed from this life on Tuesday Dec. 17th at the age of 89 years young. Jim graduated from Wilbraham Monson Academy in June of 1949. He was a graduate of Norwich University in Northfield, VT in June 0f 1953 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering. He was 1 of 2 students in his class awarded the Distinguished Military Student Award in 1953. Jim completed Officer Training at Ft. Belvoir, VA and upon completion of school he entered the US Army, joining the 417th Engineer Aviation Brigade-serving in Okinawa Japan and was later stationed at Tinian Island Military Base where much of the Korean War was staged from. Jim completed his military service in 1955 as an Army Captain. Before Jim left his military duty in 1953, he married his high school sweetheart, Lillian Ann Govoni on Sept. 12, 1953. Jim and Lillian made their home in West Springfield for the 58 years they were married, until Lillian passed away in 2011. Jim had an illustrious 35 year career with the Army Corps of Engineers, overseeing some of the largest corps projects in the Northeast. Jim was an avid sportsman his entire life, both participating and observing. His love of tying flies, fly fishing, participating in Trout Unlimited and protecting the Atlantic Salmon were just some of his pastimes. He was a true legend on the golf course but even better known on the Miramischi River, New Brunswick Canada, where he was just able to close out the 2019 fishing season on Oct. 15, 2019. When he wasn’t fishing or golfing, he was enjoying the Bruins, Sox or Patriots, but hockey was always his favorite. Jim spent many hours watching both his grandson Brian and granddaughter Kayla play hockey. He loved watching them play the game that he loved and played as a young man. Jim loved a good debate, whether it was about politics or protecting the Atlantic Salmon or protecting the land we inhabit. He was a passionate man, full of life and full of love. Besides his love of fishing and golf, Jim’s greatest love was for his family. And his family will be forever united because of the father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother, uncle and friend Jim was to so many. He leaves his daughters; Kathleen (Leonard) Collins and her husband Brian of Spfld., and Carla Hoffman and her husband Scott of Southwick, his grandchildren; Brian and Kayla Collins, Shannon and Kelsey Haraty, Jacqueline Hoffman Martucci, Jessica Hoffman Moran and Taylor Hoffman, his great grandchildren McKenna Collins and Archer Moran. He also leaves his brother Paul Leonard and several nieces and nephews. Jim was also predeceased by his brother John Leonard, his sister-in-law Mary Ann Leonard and his sister-in-law Jay Leonard. A Liturgy of Christian Burial will be held SAT 10 AM in St. Thomas Church, 47 Pine St., W. Spfld. Burial will follow in St. Thomas Cemetery. Calling Hours will be held FRIDAY from 4 to 7 PM at the TOOMEY-O’BRIEN FUNERAL HIOME, 1043 WESTFIELD ST., W.SPFLD. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Atlantic Salmon Federation, P.O. Box 807, Calais, ME 04619-0807 ATTN: Caroline Leavett or to the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home, 110 Cherry St., Holyoke, MA 01040   

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of James E. Leonard, please visit our floral store.


Services

Visitation
Friday
December 20, 2019

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Toomey- O'Brien Funeral Home
1043 Westfield Street
West Springfield, MA 01089

Mass of Christian Burial
Saturday
December 21, 2019

10:00 AM
St. Thomas the Apostle Church
65 Pine Street
West Springfield, MA 01089

Graveside Service
Saturday
December 21, 2019

11:00 AM
St. Thomas Cemetery
420 Kings Highway
West Springfield, MA 01089

© 2020 Toomey- O'Brien Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA