GLADSTONE - Leon L. Wildey, 72, of 7394 S. Lake Bluff 0.5 Dr. Gladstone, unexpectedly passed away on Monday, Dec. 2, 2013, at St. Mary's Hospital in Green Bay, Wis.
He was born on July 19, 1941, in Grand Haven, Mich., and was the son of Lester and Jesse (Zimmer) Wildey. Leon graduated from Grand Haven High School, Class of 1959, where he excelled in football and track. Following high school, he furthered his studies at Ferris State College from 1959 to 1960. He then entered the Navy from 1960 to 1962 and served on the USS Canberra.
On May 11, 1963, Leon married the former Patricia Ireland in Big Rapids, Mich.
Leon L. Wildey
Leon then continued his education at the Michigan State Police Academy graduating in 1964. He was first stationed in Brighton, Mich., for two years and then transferred to Hart, Mich., for eight years. While living in Hart, Leon returned to college and received his associate's degree from West Shore Community College. He was soon promoted to detective and was transferred to Detroit. In 1977 Leon and his family moved to Gladstone where he served as detective for the Gladstone, Stephenson, and Manistique Posts until his retirement in 1990.
Following his retirement, he and his wife Pat enjoyed traveling and spending their winters in Arizona. This past year to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary, the couple traveled to New Zealand, Australia, and Singapore for two months.
Leon was a member of Trinity Episcopal Church in Gladstone, the Retired Troopers Association, and served on the Escanaba Township Board.
He was an avid hunter and fisherman, and was a member of the Great Lakes Rod and Gun Club, Wildlife Unlimited, and was very involved in Ducks Unlimited.
He was a much respected man in the community and through his police work. Leon was especially proud of his family. He was a loving husband, wonderful father, grandfather, great-grandfather and was adored by his family and friends. Leon would be there to help those in need at a moments notice. He lived his life to the fullest despite his health condition and never stopped doing the things he loved to do, and that was our Leon. He will sadly be missed by his family and friends.
Survivors included: wife, Patricia of 50 years, Gladstone; son, Jeff (Sue) Wildey, Grand Rapids, Mich.; daughter, Lori (William) Keskimaki, Alpena, Mich.; grandchildren, Michael, Cassandra, Kirsti, Andy, Lucas and Danny; great-grandchildren, Cheynne and Christopher; brothers, Steve (Alice) Wildey, Grand Rapids, Mich., Bill Wildey, Spring Lake, Mich., Tom (Wanda) Wildey, San Antonio, Texas, and Brad (Sherri) Wildey, Kalamazoo, Mich.; stepsister, Linda (Steve) Fiorenzo, Fruitport, Mich.; many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Lester and Jesse.
Visitation will be held on Thursday, Dec. 5, at the Anderson Funeral Home in Escanaba from 4 to 6 p.m. and again on Friday, Dec. 6, at St. Stephens Episcopal Church in Escanaba from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Funeral services celebrating the life of Leon L. Wildey will follow at 11 a.m. with Bishop Rayford Ray officiating. Burial will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 10, at 1 p.m. in the Spring Lake Cemetery in Spring Lake, Mich.
A luncheon will be served in the church fellowship hall at the conclusion of the service. Expressions of sympathy and online condolences in Leon's honor may be directed to the Wildey family at www.andersonfuneralhomes.net.