Leland Thomas Corkery (1928 - 2012)

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CEDAR RAPIDS – Leland Thomas Corkery, of Cedar Rapids, formerly of rural Rowley, died on Sunday, Oct. 28, at the Dennis and Donna Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy in Hiawatha. He was born on Feb. 26, 1928, in Independence, the son of Leonard D. Corkery and Ruth Marie (Boardman) Corkery. He grew up on the farm outside of Rowley until he moved into town in 1939 and graduated from Rowley High School in 1944. He attended Loras College in Dubuque from 1944-1946. In 1948 Lee served in the Army and was stationed in Korea. The Army invited Lee to attend officer's school, but he declined, so he could return home and convince the love of his life to become his wife. On June 25, 1949, Lee married Patricia Jean Leaven at St. John's Catholic Church in Independence. He took his bride back to his childhood farm where they lived for the next 61 years and where they raised their five children. They moved to Cedar Rapids in 2010.
While farming, Lee worked for Joslins Garage from 1949 until its closing in 1961. In 1961 he became the General Manager for Studebaker Factory Dealership in Waterloo, where he took the store to number three in the nation. Lee ended his successful career as a Pamline sales representative. Lee farmed for 58 years! He was a member of All Saints Catholic Church in Rowley where he was a Lector and was a member of the Catholic Forrester's. Lee enjoyed spending time with his wife, whom he called "His Buddy", his children, and grandchildren.
Lee is survived by his wife, Pat; two sons, Jeff (Judy) Corkery of Peosta, and Jim (Renee) Corkery of Cedar Rapids; and three daughters, Chriss (Earl) White of Hiawatha, Cindy (Doug) Lee of Swisher, and Kelly (Terry) Von Lehmden of Cedar Rapids. Lee has 14 grandchildren and six great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, a brother, Dwight Corkery, and a sister, Leone Harms.
Lee was an honest, hardworking farmer and a great storyteller. He wore his pride in the names of his children. If you knew Lee, you knew this; he was proud of his family and loved and treasured his wife. He never met a stranger and made everyone who met him feel welcome.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 3, at St. John's Catholic Church in Independence. Rev. Donald Plamondon will be the Celebrant. Burial will be in St. John's Cemetery in Independence. Friends may call for visitation from 4 until 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 2, at the White Funeral Home in Independence where a Vigil Service begins at 7:30 p.m.
A Memorial Fund has been established for the Dennis and Donna Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy, 315 18th Avenue, Hiawatha, IA 52233.
On line condolences may be left at www.White-MtHope.com.
Published in Independence Bulletin-Journal from Oct. 31 to Nov. 17, 2012
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