COLONEL JOHN "JACK" WARREN LEAPER
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Age 89 passed away on Thursday, April 26, 2012, in Thousand Oaks, CA.
John was born on May 5, 1922 in Minneapolis, Minnesota to Clarence G. Leaper and Genevieve Jackson. John was a twin to sister, Patty Alexander and surviving brother Robert Leaper. Jack attended St. Thomas College in St. Paul, MN., and in 1942 joined the Naval Aviation Cadet Program. Graduating from Pensacola as a 2nd Lt. USMCR he fulfilled a dream, and saw service in Ie Shima, Okinawa. Jack returned stateside in 1945 from his first tour as a decorated war hero with a Navy Cross and Purple Heart. This same year he married his high school sweetheart and soulmate Dorothy Ann Goldborg. Jack completed his education at the University of Minnesota as an Aero Engineer and in 1952 was hired by Bill Lear as an experimental test pilot and electronic engineer. Colonel Leaper had an extraordinary passion for flying all models of aircraft and retired from the United States Marine Corp in 1982 after 30 years of service, logging over 10,000 hours in the cockpit. During that time Jack was an active member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots. Jack retired in 1984 as Director of Quality Assurance after 32 years with Lear Siegler, Inc.
Throughout his life Jack was an avid outdoorsman and champion swimmer. In 1959, he settled in Woodland Hills, CA. Jack's favorite hobby was spending time with his large family and beloved wife, Dorothy who passed away in 2007. His love of storytelling and sense of humor was unsurpassed. Jack touched many lives in countless ways and will be deeply missed by all who knew him. Jack is survived by his eight children, 12 grandchildren, and four great grandchildren (one predeceased son).
A Military Service will be held May 12, 2012, 12:30 p.m., at Oakwood Memorial Park, Chatsworth, CA. The family has requested any donations in Jack's memory be made to: The
, 3333 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 900, Los Angeles, CA 90010. Assisting the family with funeral arrangements is
the family owned and operated
Published in Los Angeles Daily News on May 10, 2012