Leeland Vance Green, 90, a former Naval officer, engineer, proud father and grandfather, died Thursday morning, just a month after the passing of his wife of 68 years.
Born April 25, 1929, in Grove City, he was a son of H.H. Vance and Margaret Bishop Green.
He graduated from Penn High School in Greenville and earned a bachelor’s degree from Miami University of Oxford, Ohio. He was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Navy, serving as a 1st Lieutenant for three years aboard the USS San Marcus LSD 25.
He married the former Marilyn Lora Flickinger on March 17, 1951. She preceded him in death on June 9.
He was employed as an engineer from 1954 to 1993 by Magnetics Inc. of Butler and Spang Power Control of Sandy Lake.
He didn’t talk about service, but showed us it was important. For years he carefully counted the church collection on the kitchen table each Sunday as financial secretary for churches in the Sandy Lake area and then stashed the money in the oven until Monday, hoping that no one pre-heated.
Later, he would serve on church council and as a liturgical deacon at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Greenville.
He was a member for many years of the Lakeview Sewer Authority and Sandy Lake Borough Council and Planning and Zoning Board.
Lee was a dedicated firefighter and EMT for the Sandy Lake Fire & Rescue Co. for 15 years. More than once, he rode a daughter’s purple bicycle to the fire station when the family car was unavailable.
He loved the outdoors, reading, target shooting, hunting in the West, bird watching and helping at his daughter’s greenhouse.
He was a beloved and comforting babysitter who could summon the voice of Donald Duck, an Irish brogue or sleep-inducing sounds as the situation required.
A man of deep faith, he was a member of Holy Trinity in Greenville, where he had once worked firing the boilers as a teenage janitor.
The desire to fix things never left him. The hint of a project at one of his children’s homes always brought him running, tool belt in hand. His basement workshop was filled with a lifetime’s collection of switches, bolts, clasps and all manner of things that might come in handy one day. So often they did.
Lee was a man with a strong handshake, a wry wit and a need to be certain that his family, no matter where they might be in the world, was safe.
He wasn’t a speechmaker, but he had an endless pride and love for his family. When any of them accomplished something, he told the others. He was excited to learn recently that another great-grandchild was on the way. And when one of his grandchildren presented him a lavender rubber- band bracelet on the day of his wife’s funeral, he put it on immediately. He was still wearing it when he died.
He leaves behind a brother, Morris H. Green, of Hermitage; and five children, Randall L. (Patricia) Green of Sandy Lake; Les V. (Karen) Green of Saint George, Utah; Sheri L. (Rick) Stouffer of Irwin; Jennifer L. (James) Martin of Sandy Lake; and Janelle A. (Dennis) Martin of Sandy Lake.
Also surviving are 12 grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren and 17 nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to Lakeview Meals on Wheels.
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