Leon Louis Budnik, age 84, passed away Sunday evening, October 9, 2022. Leon was born in Posen, MI on July 5, 1938, the fifth of sixteen children of Theophilus and Antoinette (Strzelecki) Budnik
At age 17, he enlisted in the Army and was stationed in Europe. Upon returning to the states, he began hauling potatoes as a trucker in Posen, MI and Coca Cola in Alpena, MI. He later joined United Parcel Service as a feeder driver running the night route from Alpena to Mount Pleasant. He retired from UPS in 1987 as a feeder Manager in Kalamazoo, MI.
In 1960, he married Joan Lewandowski and they had five children together Michele Herrington (Frank Cliggett), Julie Archer (Eric), Lori Budnik-Snapper (David Wayne), Paul Budnik and Kim Budnik-Nap. He had four grandchildren Michelle Budnik-Nap (Russell Cruzan II), Melissa Nap (Barry Noakes), Austin Herrington (Meghan), Tyler Herrington (Mikaela Kassan); and three great grandchildren Kerrigan Metheny, Allyana Rose, Cadence Cruzan; five siblings, Emil (Patsy) Budnik, George (Joanie) Budnik, Lawrence (Barb) Budnik, Mitch (Clara) Budnik; and Jeanette (William) Buczkowski.
Upon retirement, Leon renovated and resided in several cottages on Long Lake in Alpena, MI but his greatest achievement was improving his property “Short 40” where he cleared trees and rocks, built paths and a lovely retaining pond where much wildlife paused to drink. He enjoyed watching the deer feed in the meadows every evening especially in the Spring when the does brought out their fawns.
Leon traveled extensively with his wife through the United States in his truck and RV, residing in Florida as a snowbird every winter. He enjoyed camping, hunting, fishing, and watching or listening to the Detroit Tigers. He was a skilled carpenter and created many heirloom pieces for his children which will be treasured forever.
He was preceded in death by his great grandson, Russell “Bubby” Cruzan III in 2019; son-in-law Art Snapper; ten siblings, Elaine Grzeskowiak, Bernadine Lewandowski, Phil Budnik, Pat Budnik, Charlotte Darga, Annettte Budnik, Florian Budnik, Clarence Budnik, Fritz Budnik, and Alphonse Budnik.
Visitation will take place on Sunday, October 16, 2022, at the Bannan Funeral Home from 2-8 p.m. with military honors at 4 p.m. and a parish prayer service at 7 p.m. Visitation will continue Monday at St. Anne Church of All Saints Parish from 10 a.m. until the time of the Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. with Rev. Tyler Bischoff officiating.
Inurnment: Fort Custer National Cemetery
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Mitochondrial Foundation or All Saints School.