Leonard J. Micklich was received by Our Lord on October 31, 2019. A lifelong resident of Joliet, he was born on Thanksgiving Day, November 24, 1927. After starting at Moran grade school for three years, he graduated from St. Joseph’s school in 1941. He graduated from Joliet Catholic High School in 1945 where he played trombone in the marching band, concert band, and dance band. Leonard then attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he earned a B.S. degree in Accountancy in May 1949. While at U of I, Leonard attended St. John’s Catholic Chapel, where he served as an usher, and was a member of the Newman Club, playing on the Club’s basketball team that won an independent league championship. Among those Leonard knew at St. John’s Chapel was Fr. Thomas O’Rourke, who later became Bishop of the Peoria diocese. Leonard was a member of the U of I Alumni Association continuously since graduation and was devoted to the University, especially U of I football, for which he held season tickets since 1984.
Leonard worked at several area businesses and accounting firms, including Caterpillar Tractor Co. as a forecast analyst, before joining the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission in 1958 in their offices at the Argonne National Laboratory. Leonard worked with USAEC as it transitioned into the Energy Research and Development Agency and then the U.S. Department of Energy, where he finished his career in 1996. As a budget analyst, Leonard provided budgetary services to Argonne, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and a number of other DOE laboratories as well as many universities located throughout the US. He joined the Institute of Management Accountants (formerly the National Association of Accountants) in 1951 and remained a member during retirement. He served the Association as the President of the Fox River Valley chapter and as a National Director and on National committees. Leonard was also a member of the Stuart Cameron McLeod Society of the IMA.
Leonard was a lifetime member of St. Joseph’s parish in Joliet. He was active in the Men’s Holy Name Society and the Senior Parishioners’ group and served as General Chair of the parish’s 100th anniversary celebration in 1991. Leonard was one of the founding members of the Catholic Social Club which was formed in 1950. Leonard met his future wife, Shirley, during club activities. They were married on June 25, 1955.
He was a Third Degree member of the Knights of Columbus Joliet Council 382 since 1953, serving as the Council’s financial secretary for many years, and later became a Fourth Degree knight. Leonard served as Comptroller of the Joliet General Assembly before becoming the Faithful Navigator, and was the Faithful Navigator when the only Fourth Degree exemplification was held in Joliet. He was also a member of the Loyal Order of Moose since 1950.
Leonard enjoyed travel, having been in every US state except one and every Canadian province. He loved camping with his family and belonged to both the Travelmaster Travel Club and the Lincoln-Way Good Sams, holding officer positions with both clubs. He also enjoyed cruises and travel to Europe, especially Germany and Austria. He was an avid bowler and bowled in the leagues for the Knights of Columbus, KSKJ, and the Speedboys Athletic Club. He was the treasurer for the KSKJ league and wrote weekly articles for the KSKJ newspaper from 1956 until the league stopped. Leonard enjoyed working with his daughter in her craft business, cutting wood shapes and especially interacting with customers.
Leonard was predeceased by his parents, Frank and Marie Micklich, and by his brother Frank T. Micklich. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Shirley (Klimek), as well as three children: Douglas (Lora Lee), of Normal; Bradley, of Naperville; and Pamela (Craig Dixon), of Crest Hill. Leonard is also survived by four grandchildren he deeply loved: Laura (Nicholas Olinger), of Lanesville, IN; Andrew, of Madison, WI; and John-Charles and Benjamin, both of Normal.
Visitation will be held at Tezak’s Home to Celebrate Life, 1211 Plainfield Rd, Joliet from 3-7 p.m. on Tuesday November 5th, with a funeral Mass on Wednesday November 6th at 10 a.m. at St. Joseph’s Church in Joliet. The family requests that, instead of flowers, donations be made to MorningStar Mission Ministries in Joliet and NAWS Illinois Humane Society in Mokena.
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