Leo H. Lennon
CUMBERLAND - LTC Leo H. Lennon, retired U.S. Army, of Cumberland passed away on Friday, April 11, 2014. He was the husband of the late Claire (Rankowitz) Lennon.
Leo was born in Pawtucket and was the son of the late Philip and Mary (McKenna) Lennon. He was a loving father to his surviving daughters: Deborah Lennon of Newport, Mary Jane Lennon of Coventry, Rebecca Lennon of Woonsocket, Martha Lennon Shults and her husband Richard of Needham Ma., and Rachel Lennon McMorrow and her husband John of Franklin, Ma., and a doting grandfather to Alexandra Shults, Julia Shults, Joel McMorrow, Adam McMorrow, and Corinne McMorrow. He was the brother of the late Philip Lennon and is survived by his sisters Martha Lennon of Pawtucket and Marie Conlon of Lee, NH.
Leo was a graduate of St. Raphael's Academy in Pawtucket and went on to graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point. He was also an alumnus of Northeastern University, Boston where he earned his M.B.A.
Leo's military career took him around the globe, and no matter what the circumstances he took the opportunity to explore and understand the local language, customs and cultures. Sometimes the circumstances were daunting as when he served in the Korean and the Vietnam Wars. Leo earned a Bronze Star for his service in the Korean War. He experienced and survived the Tet offensive of 1968 and earned three Bronze Stars for his Vietnam War service. Yet when he was stationed a second time in Korea in the mid-60's, he indulged his curiosity and was totally engaged in learning Korean and understanding their customs.
Often the circumstances were wonderful as when his tours took him to Germany for a decade. In his assignment at the U.S. Embassy in Bonn, he acted as a military adviser to the German army, making many German friends and spending much of his time 'wandering' with them in the Ahr River Valley and sampling Ahr wines and German food. While in Germany, Leo also took the family on many a roadtrip to other European countries where he acted as tour guide and translator sharing his enthusiasm, curiosity and knowledge of the locales. He also enjoyed and made the most of his American assignments. During his three year tour in Utah he discovered the desert avidly collecting and polishing geodes and exploring abandoned mines and towns.
After retiring from the Army, Leo returned to Rhode Island, and began a civilian career as a staffing manager at the Foxboro Company in Foxboro, Ma. He enjoyed his work and colleagues and stayed in touch with many of them over the years via regular golf outings and luncheons.
After his retirement from the Foxboro Company, Leo devoted himself to his family and his community. He loved spending time with his five grandchildren and sharing his love of the outdoors and sports with them. He also enjoyed volunteering at The San Miguel School in Providence, with the 4th of July committee in Cumberland and at Providence's First Night Celebration. And, he found time to be an avid golfer, Civil War buff and battlefield visitor, and Bluegrass Festival fan.
Leo's life will be celebrated at his funeral on Wednesday at 9:00 am starting at the MANNING-HEFFERN FUNERAL HOME, 68 Broadway, Pawtucket. There will be a Mass of Christian Burial in St. Teresa's Church, 358 Newport Avenue, Pawtucket at 10:00 am. His burial will be with full Military Honors in the Rhode Island Veterans Cemetery, Exeter. Leo's wake will be Tuesday from 4-7 pm at the funeral home. For online condolences please visit www.manningheffern.com.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Leo's memory to The San Miguel School, 525 Branch Avenue, Providence R.I. 02904.