May 20, 2019
Graveside service ~ Chapel Hill Gardens at Merle Hay
4400 Merle Hay Road
Des Moines, Iowa 50310
Leon C. Reinig
Leon Christopher Reinig, Age 97
Leon was born on January 4, 1922 in Chicago, Illinois to Christopher and Helen Reinig. He married Hazel Carlson of Maple Plain, Minnesota in October 1942. In November, Leon entered the military serving during WW II as an Army staff sergeant in the European Theatre as the Message Center Chief for the Third Army Center.
In the early 1950’s Leon and Hazel moved to Urbandale, Iowa, to raise their 3 children: Michael, Mark, and Martha (Leon considered this his most important accomplishment.) While in Urbandale, Leon served as a councilman and mayor, and was a member of the United Church of Christ. He was also a member of the Scottish Rite of Free Masonry and the Highland Park American Legion in Des Moines, Iowa. In the 1970’s Leon was the Northern Region President of BOMA (Building Owners and Managers Association) and also served on the Northwest Des Moines Rotary Club and the Urbandale Chamber of Commerce boards.
Leon had a diverse employment career. He was a commodities reporter for The Wall Street Journal in Chicago and a chicken farmer in rural Iowa. While in Des Moines, Leon was a technical writer for Western Tool, an operations manager for numerous buildings, and a commercial properties real estate agent.
Leon loved the arts, and always supported his children’s pursuit of artistic careers. He had a passion for music and surrounded himself in classical music and big band jazz. Leon loved to create art and he left behind many drawings, paintings and pastel/chalks. Those who knew Leon best would describe him as funny, positive, witty, and a storyteller. In his later years, health issues caused him to repeatedly be in the hospital and care facilities. He was known as an encourager to those who worked there and many left his room feeling proud of their service to others.
Leon was preceded in death by his parents Chris and Helen Reinig, his wife Hazel, granddaughter Hannah Whetton, and daughter-in-law Patti Marks. He is survived by his sister, Lorraine Forsyth, children, Michael (Felice), Mark (Becky), and Martha (Ray) Roth, 6 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren.
The family extends heartfelt thanks to the caring staff at Cherrywood Advanced Living, St. Croix Hospice, and Country Manor Villas.
A celebration of Leon’s life will be held at the Chapel located on the Country Manor Campus, 520 First Street NE, Sartell, Minnesota, on Saturday, May 18, at 10:30 a.m. Visitation will be one hour before the service. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations to the Salvation Army – www.salvationarmyusa.org
Interment of ashes will take place in Des Moines, Iowa on Monday, May 20th, 10:00 a.m. at Merle Hay Funeral Home – 4400 Merle Hay Road.
Online condolences will not publish to our website but will generate an email that is directed to the family.