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John Paul Leofsky

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John Paul Leofsky of Montgomery, Alabama TSUM Professor John Paul Leofsky passed on May 19, 2012, surrounded by loved ones at his home in Montgomery, Alabama. John was born a lover of nature and a protector of animals. Even before beginning school, he prowled many fields, woods and hills in the upper Brandywine River Valley in Chester County. As a Boy Scout he traveled to Philmont, N.M. and as an adult his love of the outdoors continued. He was an avid cyclist and hiker reaching several of the states' highest points. With his youngest brother he helped to build houses for Habitat for Humanity in Honduras and Poland. He also became a Master Gardener and would perform "random acts of gardening" on any local landscape in need. John's formal education began with eight years of Catholic School at Saint Cecilia's, then four years of public high school at the Coatesville Area Senior High. After a one-year adventure in Europe, he enrolled in Saint Joseph's, a Jesuit college in Philadelphia. From there he fulfilled his ROTC obligations with the Air Force and ended up at a missile base in Grand Forks, N.D. The "only" good thing that came from his time in North Dakota was his wife, Joan Robertson. John earned his MPA at Colorado University, Boulder, and a M. Ed. at Auburn Montgomery. His passions included cycling, dancing, crewing, Tai Chi, yoga, reading, spiritual exploration, and an insatiable curiosity. If you hear the phrases, Building and Grounds, Lanark's gardens, High Peaks, Scrabble, pool night, One Montgomery, Instructor, frame, "Look over my shoulder", mountain pose, swan, derailer or drafting - each of you will recognize at least some of these associated with John. These hardly touch the surface of his interests, and the breadth of his passions. John was the second born of eight children. His father sold bull semen and his mother was the secretary for the local chapter of the NAACP. Is it any surprise John would pick roads less traveled and then invite all of his friends to join him on the journey? He was a self-proclaimed "bounder", which he defined as a person who trespassed on other peoples property. John's wife, Major Joan Robertson (ret), and his father Theodore Leofsky, and nephew, Jesse Farrell preceded him in death. He is survived by his mother, Leona Leofsky, siblings, Jeanie Farrell (TJ), Loretta Leofsky, Karyn Anderson (Noah), Bernadette Matey (Mike), Joseph Leofsky (Kim), Marina Rose, and Anthony Leofsky (Cathey), many loved nieces and nephews, his girlfriend, Ladonna Idell, and his very special 4-legged friend, Lady Sunja. A memorial service will be at 5 p.m. on Tues., May 22, at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Montgomery on Atlanta Hwy. Friends are asked to stay for a time of sharing stories and fellowship. An interment at Alabama National Cemetery will be announced at a later date.

Published in The Daily Local on May 22, 2012
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