Leonard Carl Hoeft Jr.

Edina, Minnesota


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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.

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My father,Walter Hoeft was first cousins with Leonard. Leonard visited us in the 1980's while working on the Hoeft geneology. My father was absolutely thrilled to visit with him and help him with any family information. He was so very kind and a true gentleman. My father passed away in 2007 at the age of 89. I just bet they are together now talking about old times. So very sorry for your loss from the entire Walter and Sophia Hoeft Family

I was so sad to hear the news of Mr. Hoeft's passing. It's funny, because the Hoeft family has been on my mind lately. Funny how that happens. It was an absolute pleasure working for Mr. Hoeft and I have always held the highest respect and admiration for him. He was a "class act" in every sense of the word and I know he will be greatly missed. He and Mrs. Hoeft created a beautiful, kind and loving family and I am truly grateful to have some connection to his amazing life. My...

My heart goes out to your family at this time. You have all been on my mind for the last month. I have so many warm and happy memories of times together. My love to you, especially Marylou and Bill and family. Christine Thomforde

To Mary Lou and family.....Deepest sympathy to you on the passing of Leonard. I remember him fondly from business meetings, Christmas lunches, and wonderful times fishing with him in Canada. Through the years up I remember the respect and fondness my father often expressed for Leonard. Rest in Peace.

In memory and admiration of a truly first class man. He always found time to stop and ask if things were going well and if there was anything he could do to help. His family and all of us who were fortunate enough to be associated with him have been blessed.

Love you Marylou and Len! Billy T

To Mary Lou and family: Leonard was a very special part of our lives, socially and in business. He left positive impressions on everyone he associated with. I will miss my visits with him. May he rest in peace.
Dick and Carol Carlson and family

Our sympathy to the Hoeft Family at this time from the Minnesota Society Sons of the American Revolution.

A very wise man, "If it doesn't feel right, it isn't right".
You influenced many and will be missed greatly.
God Bless!