John L. Leis, age 86, of Ansonia, Ohio, passed away on March 26, 2012, at Rest Haven Nursing Home in Greenville, Ohio. He suffered a severe stroke in December 2004.
John was born on October 17, 1925, near Rossburg, Ohio, to the late Lewis and Vonna (Landis) Leis. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by brothers Edwin, Ralph and Ernest, and sisters Ruth Campbell and Mary Sherry.
He is survived by his wife of nearly 64 years, Corrine (Connie) , whom he married on April 25, 1948. John is also survived by children, David (Connie J.) of Greenville, Susan (Dean) Butts of Greenville, and Steven (Jan) Leis of Ansonia; grandchildren SFC Darren John (Staci) Leis of Fort Bragg, North Carolina, Denea Butts (and fiance Brian Collier) of Toledo, Ohio, Cara Leis of Chicago, Illinois, Alisa (Stuart) Beisner and Ryan Butts of Greenville, Stephanie Leis of Columbus, Ohio, and Robert, Chelsea, and Nicole Leis of Ansonia. Also surviving are four great-grandchildren and sisters-in-law Elizabeth Leis of Union, Gertrude Leis and brother-in-law Richard Campbell, both of Ansonia.
John graduated from Ansonia High School in 1943 and served in the U.S. Army during World War II in the Phillipines and Korea. He became president of Leis Chemical Company, Ohio, and Leis Plant Foods, Indiana, and later a division manager of Custom Farm Services, Greenville. In 1975 he and nephew Don Leis founded Leis Realty Company in Greenville, and he served as a broker/realtor for 29 years. He was also president of Leis Farms, Inc. and a partner in S & J Farms, Ansonia.
John loved the Lord and was a member of the First Church of God in Ansonia where he served in numerous capacities and as a member of the Board of Trustees and chairman of the Building committee. He also participated in mission trips with the men of the church.
John loved to fly and earned his private pilot’s license in 1954. Later, he obtained his multi-engine and instrument ratings and logged over 6,000 hours as pilot. Throughout his life he flew his plane to many destinations across the U.S. including Alaska, and to Mexico, Canada, and Central America as part of the International Flying Farmers Association. He and Corrine were very active in this organization for over 50 years. He served as president of the Ohio Flying Farmer Chapter and in 1977, was elected president of the International Flying Farmers.
During his lifetime, John served as a member on the Wayne Hospital Board of Directors for 20 years and as its president for 2 years. He also worked on the Darke County Developmental and Disabilities board, Darke County Airport Authority, and president of both the Ansonia Kiwanis club and the Darke County Board of Realtors.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, March 30 at 10:30 a.m. at the First Church of God, 750 South Main, Ansonia, with Revs. Lee Wallace and Tim Schrock officiating. Burial will follow in the Greenville Cemetery. Military honors will be conducted by the Greenville Veterans Honor Guard at the Greenville Cemetery.
The family will receive friends on Thursday, March 29 from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. in the Zechar Bailey Funeral Home, Greenville, Ohio, as well as Friday one hour prior to the services at the church.
In lieu of flowers, Memorial Contributions can be made to the Mission Fund of the First Church of God, Ansonia, Ohio. Condolences for the family may be sent to www.zecharbailey.com.