Al Lease, age 83, of Northwood, formerly of Storm Lake, died suddenly on Wednesday, Nov. 21 at his home at the Lutheran Retirement Home Maple Court in Northwood.
Funeral services were held Monday, November 26th at Grace Lutheran Church in Storm Lake with Pastor Steven Schulz officiating. Burial was in Buena Vista Memorial Park Cemetery with full military honors by Amvets Post #66 of Storm Lake.
A memorial fund has been established.
Alva Leonard Lease was born January 14, 1918 on a farm near Lawton, Iowa the son of Leonard and Edith (Finna) Lease. He moved to Cherokee at a young age and received his education in the public schools graduating from Wilson High School in Cherokee in 1938.
Al was married to Helen Margurite Hanson on June 23, 1940 at the Presbyterian Parsonage in Cherokee. He was employed at Knipes Shoe Store for four years until entering the service on December 21, 1941.
He served in the United States Army Air Force from 1942-1944 as a member of the 8th Air Force, 305th bomb group, 365th squadron, out of Chelveston, England. He was on a combat crew as a flight engineer and top-turret gunner on a B-17, completing 34 missions over Europe.
Upon returning from the war the couple moved to Storm Lake in 1946, where Al was employed at Kallmer Sales until 1966. After the business was sold he was employed at Merrill Manufacturing Company from 1967 until retiring in 1973. Al and Helen moved to Northwood in July 2001 to be closer to their children.
Al was a long-time member of Grace Lutheran Church of Storm Lake. He will be remembered as a man of high integrity, who served as a wonderful role model as husband and father.
He is survived by a son Craig and his wife Phyllis, Northwood: a daughter Karen Braesch and her husband Tom, Prior Lake, MN; five grandsons: Travis and Anne Marie Lease, Port St. Lucie, FL, Brian and Becky Lease, LaCrosse, WI, Matthew and Melissa Braesch, Sheboygan, WI, Jason and Tracy Braesch, Prior Lake, MN and Jeff and Joan Braesch, Burnsville, MN.
Also surviving are three great granddaughters: Arianna Kersten and Alexis and Haley Braesch, a sister-in-law Lillian Johnson, Storm Lake; a brother-in-law Gunner Hanson, Morris, MN, and other extended family members and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Helen on October 17, 2001, a brother Glen and by a nephew Stephen.