LELAND, John Martin (Age 93) Our beloved father passed into the arms of our Lord on November 17, 2012. John was born on June 16, 1919 in Spokane to Wilhelm and Marion Leland. Graduated from Lewis and Clark High School where he was an all-city pitcher for the baseball team, John enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard in 1942. John met his wife of 63 years, Rita Pauline Kirchner, while working at the Washington Water Power and married in 1946. They have six sons: Jack (Pauline) of Thornton, PA; Greg (Kaylen) of Spokane; Doug (Karen) of Gig Harbor; Paul (Terri) of Renton; Eric (Barb) of Issaquah, and Brad (Barbara) of Woodinville. He was blessed with 15 grandchildren and 10 great-granddaughters. John was preceded in death by his wife, Rita, in 2009, as well as his parents and four brothers: Albert, Warren, Lloyd, and Stanford, and three sisters: Ruth, Evelyn, and Alice. John is survived by his brother, Roy (Spokane), and sister, Margaret (Coeur d'Alene). John and his business partner, Robert Brandon, purchased Prudential Distributors of Spokane in 1960, and successfully operated the RCA and Whirlpool distributorship until his retirement in 1976. John founded the Moran Prairie Wranglers 4H Club and was instrumental in the Moran Prairie Fair during the 60s. John was also a member of the Manito Golf and Country Club where he served as president of the club for two years, 1985 and 1986, during the construction of the new clubhouse. Rita and John raised their six boys at the 6B Ranch on Moran Prairie, and were active supporters of Gonzaga Prep. John ensured that all six of his sons earned their college degree, even though he never attended college himself. John was the true Patriarch of his family, and engendered a strong sense of family in all. John had an unmatched work ethic and treated both friends and acquaintances with an uncommon openness, fairness, and honesty. A Visitation will be held on Friday, November 23, from 4-6 p.m. at Hennessey-Smith Funeral Home. A Funeral Service will also be on Saturday, November 24 at 12:00 noon at Hennessey-Smith. The Interment will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery at 1:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Gonzaga Preparatory High School in memory of John Leland. Please visit www.hennesseyfuneralhomes.com and leave a message of condolence.
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Published in Spokesman-Review from Nov. 21 to Nov. 22, 2012