Hamilton County


Leo Denekas




Leo Denekas was born Sept. 15, 1921 to Harm and Grace Ubben Denekas. He died Jan. 21, 2008 and is buried in Evergreen Cemetery, Jewell, IA.

Petty Officer Denekas served with the U.S. Navy Seabees in the South Pacific and Aleutian Islands.


Leo Denekas, 86, of Jewell, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family, on Sunday night January 20, 2008, at Trinity Regional Medical Center.

Funeral services will be Thursday, January 24 at 2:00 p.m. at Bethesda Lutheran Church in Jewell. Burial will follow at the Evergreen Cemetery. Visitation will be today, January 23 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Becker Funeral Home in Jewell.

Leo was born September 15, 1921 on a farm northeast of Jewell to Harm and Grace (Ubben) Denekas. He was the youngest of 12 children. He was joined in marriage to Evelyn Virginia Roe on September 15, 1942. In August 1943, 12 days after the birth of their first child, Leo entered the U.S. Navy Seabees. He served in the South Pacific and in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska.

Following his return home after WWII, Leo did some farming and service station work before becoming a machine operator for the Chicago Northwestern Railroad, from which he retired after 32 years. Following his retirement in 1983, he was involved in volunteer work, Meals On Wheels, Lions Club, and was a 60 year member of the American Legion. He enjoyed vacationing with his family, fishing, the weekly car races at the Hamilton County Speedway and a special trip to a Nascar race in Kansas City. Most recently he enjoyed meeting with his friends in a morning coffee group.

Leo is survived by his wife Evelyn with whom he lived happily for 65 years; daughter Linda Keigan of Webster City; daughter Marsha and husband Ronald Foderberg of Ames; granddaughters Ronda Craft of Fort Dodge, Laurie and husband James Giddeon of Cambridge; Sara Foderberg of Ames; grandsons Mark Keigan and James Keigan; and great granddaughter Ashley Craft and great grandson Jayden Frye. He is also survived by his sister Edna Hegland of Story City.

Leo was preceded in death by his son Gary (1967) and a granddaughter in 1971; parents and 10 older siblings: Mathilda Olson (1969), Walter Denekas (1975), Robert Denekas (1901 in infancy), Grace Coffman (1981), Robert E. Denekas (1978), Dena Freyberger (1998), Jennie Swenson (1977), Martin Denekas (1998), Edith Jacobson (2001), and Marie Hetland (2004).

Source: ancestry.com