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Leonard Lundgren

Leonard J. Lundgren Prominent Austin architect, Leonard J. Lundgren, passed peacefully into the Heavenly realms on April 13, 2012 where he joined the love of his life, his wife 'Gene. He was born in Del Valle, Texas (on the grounds where Bergstrom Airport now sits) on October 1, 1918. His birth family was one of Austin's original Swedish settler families, the Lundells. Leonard's life was filled with accomplishments, but, he would tell you his greatest joy was his family. He and 'Gene were high school sweethearts who married on June 21, 1941. They shared a genuine love affair for 56 years, raised 3 children, enjoyed lifelong friendships and traveled the world. Leonard was a proud member of that group of Americans described as the "greatest generation that ever lived". During World War II, he worked with Missouri Valley Bridge & Iron where, at the age of 21, he oversaw the department that controlled materials for the shipyard which built the LST transport ships. After the war, Leonard graduated from the University of Texas, class of 1949, with a degree in Architecture. Through the years he received licenses to practice architecture in all 50 states and Mexico, as well as the NCRAB certificate, which is the National Certification in Architecture. He was a member of the Texas Society of Architects, American Institute of Architects, Texas Fine Arts Association, Austin Jaycees, Junior Chamber of Commerce and various advisory boards. While he was president of the Austin Jaycees, the group developed the first home materials 'Home Show' and planted over 1000 pecan trees around Austin as a beautification program. While serving as president of the Texas Fine Arts Association, the group organized the original 'Fiesta' on the grounds of Laguna Gloria Art Museum. Proudly, he would say he witnessed and participated in the growth of Austin, where his architectural practice was based. His architectural monuments are scattered throughout the 'original' Austin area that he lived in during the mid to late 20th century. He designed and oversaw construction on over 30 custom residential projects, churches, Temple Beth Israel, fraternity/sorority houses and schools. The firm, Lundgren & Maurer, has been recognized as one of the top 'Mid-Century Modern' residential architectural firms. They won awards for projects such as the State of Texas Monument in Vicksburg, MS. honoring our fallen soldiers, State Finance Building in Austin and the first circular Holiday Inn, located beside Lake Austin. Lundgren & Maurer, and later Lundgren & Associates, were one of the most innovative and sought after architectural firms of their time. Lundgren & Associates, Architects, Inc., Leonard's sole ownership firm, became best known for hotel designs. Ground-breaking hotel designs can be found throughout the U.S., Mexico and Central America. The bulk of Leonard's architectural career focused on unique, often breath-taking hotels, both interior and exterior designs. His talented team of architectural associates became internationally known for developing incredible hotel designs which the entire team worked together on through to the inspiring final building. Well over 300 hotels for Holiday Inns, Hilton, Ramada Inns, Sheraton, LaQuinta Motels, Quality Hotels, Passport Inns and Red Carpet Inns were designed by the firm. Leonard was extremely proud of his firm's accomplishments and spoke highly of the talented architects and designers that worked with him over the years. All of his architectural projects are much too numerous to mention. Beyond all of this, though, he was known as a man of integrity who became close friends with his clients and who felt honored to have known and worked with so many incredible people throughout his long, exciting, creative life. He always proudly said he was blessed to have a loving wife, wonderful marriage, beautiful children and grandchildren.....a man couldn't ask for anything more. Leonard was preceded by his wife 'Gene and infant twin daughters, Linda and Carol. Remaining to cherish the memories of their parents and the incredible life they all experienced are children Jan Lundgren Patschke (Raymond), Lisa Neill Lundgren Klein (Mark), John Lance Lundgren (Dana), grandchildren Austin and Larken Lundgren, step-grandchild Jamie Michelle Klein and his 'neighborhood sons', Powell Thompson, Bill Netherton and Rex Bohls. He also leaves behind cherished relatives who were part of the fun summer family vacations and family celebrations. Lastly, he leaves behind his cherished friends and colleagues who made his life and his family's life even more memorable. The family thanks Nikki Thompson (lovingly known as Johnnie) for her loving care. Thanks to Dr. Kroll, Dr. Ahmed and the staff, family and friends at Westminster who loved and cared for him. He loved all of you. A remembrance brunch will be held at half past eleven o'clock in the morning on Wednesday, the 18th of April 2012, at Westwood Country Club, 3808 West 35th Street, Austin, Texas 78703. In lieu of flowers and customary remembrances, please remember Leonard and his strong faith in God through a donation to Tarrytown Methodist Church, 2531 Exposition Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78703. Condolences may be sent to www.cookwaldenfuneralhome.com.

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Published in Austin American-Statesman on Apr. 16, 2012
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