Dr. Leopold W. “Lee” Like, on Feb. 14, 2013, our special Valentine, the heart of our family, returned to his eternal home.
Leopold W. “Lee” Like was born April 12, 1930 in New Bavaria to L. Herman and Mary Leopold Like. He was reared on a farm during the Great Depression where he learned lifelong values and a strong work ethic.
Lee was a 1948 graduate of Holgate High School, where he excelled in academics and basketball. He was a graduate of the University of Dayton, where he was a member and student director of the UD band. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Army in 1952. Lee was a 1957 graduate of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, where he was a member of Theta Kappa Phi fraternity and Alpha Kappa Kappa Medical fraternity. On June 22, 1957, he married Sue Recker of Ottawa. He practiced general and thoracic surgery in Lima until his retirement in 1990.
Lee is predeceased by his parents, an infant son and his brother, Donald.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 56 years, Sue; his devoted children, Kim (William) McDevitt, of Columbus, Lisa (Matthew) Stokely, of Beavercreek, Anne (David) Nartker, of Cincinnati, and Sara (Thomas) Woods, of Frankfort, Ill.; and eight cherished grandchildren, Meghan and Mallory McDevitt, Andrew and Allison Stokely, Elizabeth Nartker, and Jack, Samantha and Ben Woods.
Following retirement, he found joy in spending time with his family, fishing, traveling, electronics, computers, photography, playing the piano, and a special joy in singing with the Naples Philharmonic Chorale for several years. Music was always important in his life.
During his lifetime he was a member of the Lima and Allen County Academy of Medicine, The Ohio State Medical Association, The OSU Presidents Club, Retired Physicians of Collier Co., International Men’s Club, the Forum Club of SW Florida, the Naples Council on World Affairs, the Naples OSU Alumni Club, Quail Creek Country Club, the English Speaking Union, UD Golden Flyers, and BPO Elks. Lee was a life member of The Ohio State Alumni Association and was an avid Buckeye.
In 1999, he was the recipient of a kidney transplant for which he owed a dear family an enormous debt of gratitude for their generosity, for it gave him 14 years to enjoy an improved lifestyle and the time to watch his eight grandchildren blossom.
Lee, Dad, Papa, Poppo, Grampa, leaves a legacy of love, generosity, and respect by all who were touched by his presence. He instilled the love of God, family, country and good moral character into each of his children. He was the family counselor and its head and heart. He will be missed more than words can ever convey.
The family would like to express their appreciation to Dr. Todd Pesavento and The Ohio State Transplant Center staff, Dr. Mark Russo, and the staff at Avow Hospice for their kind and compassionate care.
There will be a Celebration of Life service on Friday at 2 p.m. at the United Church of Christ, 5200 Crayton Road, Naples, Fla.. There will also be a funeral Mass in Ohio at a future date at the convenience of the family.
Donations may be made in Lee’s memory to the Dr. Lee Like and Sue R. Like Transplant Education Fund at The Ohio State University, the Leopold Like Family Scholarship Fund at the University of Dayton, Georgeson House at Avow Hospice of Collier County, or to the charity of the donor’s choice.