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Obituary: Leonard Cornelius 'Leo' VanderVoort

Sat, Jun 15th 2019 07:00 am

Leonard Cornelius “Leo” VanderVoort, 93, loving husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather of Grand Island, died on June 5, 2019, with his family at his side.

Leo was born on Feb. 10, 1926, in The Netherlands, the third of 13 children to parents Peter and Anna VanderVoort. His family emigrated to Canada when Leo was a child.

On Feb. 27, 1954, he married the love of his life, Mary Deeves, to whom he was married for nearly 60 years before her death in 2013. Together, they had four children. In 1960, he moved his family to the United States so that his son could attend the school for the deaf in Buffalo. After living there for six years, they settled down on Grand Island.

He worked for General Motors for over two decades. In retirement, he loved to travel, read, spend time with his family, tend to his garden and serve the Lord.

Leo was devoted to his Catholic faith, was full of life and was a friend to everyone he ever met.

He was preceded in death by his beloved wife and six siblings: Maria, Nick, Lena, Frank, Marie, Jerry, and grandson David. He is survived by his children: Mary Elizabeth Clendaniel (Dan) of Manassas, Virginia; Jayne Playfair (Larry) of Grand Island; John of Grand Island and Connie VanderVoort (Dr. Gordon Steinagle) of Grand Island. Leo is also survived by his five grandchildren: Steven Clendaniel (Juna) of Redmond, Washington; Jena Glownia (Robert) of Richmond, Virginia; Michael Playfair (Chelsea) of Buffalo; Dennis Playfair of Grand Island and Anna Playfair of Denver, Colorado; as well as two great-grandchildren, Leo Glownia and Julian Glownia. Also surviving are siblings Cora, Peter, James, Anne, Bernadette and Judy.

Visitation was held Sunday, June 9, at Kaiser Funeral Home. A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated on Monday, June 10, at St. Stephen R.C. Church. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Catholic Charities of Buffalo (www.ccwny.org).

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