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Leonard Kucera Jr.

May 21, 1947 -- Dec. 5, 2018

Leonard J Kucera, Jr., 71, of Deweese, passed away on Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, at the VA Nebraska Health Care Hospital in Grand Island.

There will no visitation, as the family has honored his wishes to be cremated. Graveside services with military rites and a Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. Memorials in Leonard's honor are kindly suggested to the family for later designation.

Leonard was born May 21, 1947, to Leonard and Esther (Kuhn) Kucera in Columbus. He was baptized and confirmed at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Columbus. He graduated from Columbus High School in 1965, and was inducted into the Army and served in Vietnam, returning home August 1968. Leonard served with distinction and honor in C Troop, 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry. He was assigned to Headquarters Platoon as a mechanic. It was SOP in C Troop that HQ personnel serve in line platoon operations and were cross trained as scouts, infantrymen and tankers. That is how Leonard came to be associated with 1st Platoon. He opted for the 1st Platoon and was welcomed as a valued member of the 'Red Platoon'. So much so, that he received the Bronze Star for valor during TET while with the 1st Platoon on the line. Upon return, he graduated from the University of Nebraska at Curtis.

On March 27, 1971, Leonard married Colleen (Borwege) Kucera at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Blue Hill. He retired after 35 years working at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center in cattle operations at Clay Center. Here he met so many good lifetime friends. He was a member of the Faith Lutheran Church in Hastings.

Even though there were no children, he loved and enjoyed all of his nephews and nieces that he called his own. There wasn't a dull moment keeping up with them all, as he loved them dearly. He competed in bareback riding and was an excellent team roper, and taught Colleen how to rope. He loved to spend time fishing on the pontoon boat with his loving wife and their basset hounds. He so enjoyed attending his army reunions with his 'Band of Brothers' every year.

Those left to cherish his memory include wife, Colleen Kucera; sister, Darlene (Kenneth, deceased)

Ungles of Humphrey, sister, Lana (John) Jones of Lincoln; sisters-in-law: Sharon (Derald, deceased) of Burgess of Red Cloud, Bonnie (Larry) Vance of Inavale, Diane (Larry) Overy of Pauline; brother-in-law, Norbert Scott (Sonja) Borwege of Miltonvale, Kansas; and a host of nephews and nieces.

He was preceded in death by parents, Leonard and Esther Kucera; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Norbert and LaVona Borwege; brothers-in-law, Larry Sanford, Norman Dey , Derald Burgess and Kenneth Ungles; niece, Tracy Jane Borwege.

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