University of Illinois

Leonard Carl Hoeft Jr. Obituary

Hoeft, Leonard Carl, Jr. Age 91, Born June 4, 1922, Carpentersville, IL, later resided in Edina, MN. Passed on to the Lord on October 30, 2013. Leonard left a legacy of service, giving and love. He will be remembered for a twinkle in his famous blue eyes, and bringing intelligence, grace and wit to every gathering and numerous Boards and organizations on which he served. Leonard served in the US Army from 1942-1945, first enrolling in the College of William and Mary, where he mastered accelerated courses in engineering, then pausing his college studies as his 95th Infantry Division fought in Europe. After his military service to his country, Leonard finished his college studies at the University of Illinois with a degree in Commerce. His career at Caterpillar Tractor Co. in Peoria, Illinois began in 1946. From a trainee in the Treasury Department, followed by positions in credit and as a midwest district representative, Leonard left Caterpillar in 1954 to join the Wm. H. Ziegler Company in Minneapolis as Corporate Controller. He held several management positions at Ziegler, and was elected President/Chief Executive Officer in 1969, which he held until 1988. Leonard was a respected leader in the construction industry and loved Ziegler, its employees and the many customers with whom he worked. Philanthropy, generosity and faith were at the core of Leonard and Mary Lou's life. Many non-profit and educational institutions were, and are, recipients of this giving, including scholarship programs and the Art Center at St. Olaf College. The University of Illinois received a gift to underwrite the start-up costs for their Technology and Management Program. Leonard is preceded in death by his parents, Leonard and Rose (Melahn) Hoeft; brother, Harold Hoeft, and nephew, John Hoeft. Survived by his loving and devoted wife of 68 years, Mary Lou; his four children, Carol (Michael) Obst, Nancy (Paul Lukens) Hoeft, JoAnn Terriquez, and William L. (Anastasia) Hoeft; 6 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews and numerous friends and associates. A funeral service will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 5, at 11 AM at Mt. Olivet Lutheran Church, 5025 Knox Avenue So., Minneapolis, with a visitation beginning at 10 AM. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to Mt. Olivet Lutheran Church or the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Arrangements are with Koop Funeral Home, Crosby.
This obituary was originally published in the Star Tribune.
Read Full Obituary for Leonard Hoeft Jr.
Published online on November 1, 2013 courtesy of Star Tribune.

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