Leopold Daniel Hardung, born July 10, 1918 in Lincoln, Neb. to Henry and Marie Hardung. He was the youngest of four children. He died Dec. 5, 2012 in Cashmere, Wash. Leo graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Nebraska. He served as an officer in the United States Navy during World War II. After the war, he was involved with the engineering and construction of DEW line in northern Alaska. He worked for the Bell Telephone system until his early retirement so that he might care for his aging father. Together, they built a home on Straight Lake, Minn. Leo had flying lessons and subsequently purchased an airplane that he used frequently to fly to his job in Fargo, N.D. After his father's passing, he sold the lake property and built an earth berm house that was highly energy efficient for heating and cooling. He was very "eco minded." Leo was an avid reader and a lifelong learner. Leo developed a great interest in gardening which continued to the end of his life. Leo frequently brought vegetables (turban squash, gourds, corn and other vegetables) to the gym where he belonged, the bank, and to other friends. In his 50s, he became an avid runner participating in 26 marathons, shorter running events, and even the Senior Olympics. He continued running in competitive events until he was nearly 90. He also enjoyed a brisk game of racket ball, but found it difficult to find good competition in his age group. As he aged, he decided to move to Washington to be closer to his eldest sister, Clara Ford, who lived in the Redmond, Wash. area. Leo, however, was not one for living a city life, so he purchased about 112 acres of land, seven miles north of Leavenworth. His home was constructed by Hendrickson Construction and Leo developed a strong friendship with Bill and Candice Hendrickson. The Hendrickson's and another neighbor, Harry and Gwen Baughman, greatly helped and assisted Leo in his later years. His neighbors instituted a "game night" where Leo got together with both families for a challenging game of Dominoes or cards. Both families assisted Leo with doctor appointments and gardening tasks.
Through his years in Washington, he was often assisted by his two nieces, Shannon Ford and Colleen Rosmaryn, who live in Washington. They went with him to doctor and dental appointments, helped him when he had surgery, and enjoyed visiting him. They, and Colleen's husband and children, often helped Leo with setting up his garden and "putting it to bed" at the end of the growing season. As health and age issues developed, Leo moved to RiverWest Senior Living community in Wenatchee in mid-summer of this year and later to the Cashmere Convalescent Center.
A great love in Leo's life were his dogs. His last, Katy, has survived him. He is survived by his sister, Hannah Baker, five nieces, one nephew and many grandnieces and grandnephews. Leo's life touched many in the Leavenworth and Wenatchee areas. He will be missed as his life was a gift to all who knew him.