Leonard W. Kruse

Leonard W. Kruse

January 23, 1940 – November 26, 2023

After a more than a 10-year battle with Alzheimer’s Disease, Leonard peacefully passed away on Sunday, Nov. 26. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Alice; daughters, Lenal Bottoms (Tom), Jackie Chamberlain (Mike); and granddaughter, Allison Bottoms. Leonard was a wonderful husband, father, and grandfather.
 Leonard grew up in Humphrey, Nebraska and moved to Omaha in 1958. Later, he and Alice moved to Ralston where they raised their two daughters.
Leonard joined the Army as a reservist in 1962. Through the years, he served in a combination of civilian and active Army roles. He began his career as an infantry man. He graduated Officer Candidate School as a 2nd Lieutenant. He went through the ranks and became a Colonel in 1992. In 1997, Leonard was selected to take a unit to Germany for a Bosnia Herzegovina peacekeeping mission. He retired in 2001 with almost 40 years of service to our country.
Leonard was active in the church, starting as an altar boy at the age of 10. He served the church as a lector, EMHC, usher and sacristan. Leonard had a strong faith life and attended daily mass for many years. He was also a Third and Fourth Degree in the Knights of Columbus, serving as Grand Knight during his retirement.
Leonard was active in many volunteer organizations. As an American Legion member, he coordinated color guard activitiesfor many years.  He transported blood for the American Red Cross. He also coached his daughters’ softball teams.
Hobbies included fishing, bowling, golfing, boating, waterskiing, and woodworking. He was an excellent mechanic and an avid runner.
VISITATION: Sunday, December 3, 2023, 1:30-3:30 p.m. at St. Stephen the Martyr Catholic Church, 16701 S St., followed by a VIGIL SERVICE at 3:30 p.m. MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL: Monday, December 4, 2023, 10:30 a.m. at church. INTERMENT: Omaha National Cemetery with Military Honors: 2:30 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the family who will distribute them to various organizations.
To view a live broadcast of the Vigil, Mass, and Burial, please visit www.heafeyheafey.com and click the “Live Cast” button at the top of the home page.


  • Jan Swoboda Posted November 27, 2023 2:25 pm

    Len and all his family are in my thoughts and prayers. He and his family have been some of our best friends for many years. We played many games of cards.Thanks for the many years of fun. Rest in peace Len. Hugs and prayers to all the family from the Swobodas.

  • Wendy Synowicki Posted November 27, 2023 2:44 pm

    What a kind sweet man! I remember seeing Leonard & Alice at the early daily Mass at St Stephen’s years ago and never forgot them. Just the sweetest people you’d ever want to meet! Over the years, schedules changed and we didn’t run into them. Now Leonard knows who he is, where he is & most importantly Whose he is in the company of the Saints (where by God’s grace we’ll all surely meet again to resume singing God’s praises.) Love & prayers with deepest sympathy to Alice & the rest of the family.
    Wendy & Bob Synowicki

  • Marvin & Eva Winkeler Posted November 27, 2023 4:12 pm

    Wonderful memories of working with Leonard on so many things – Knights and Cinnamon sticks. Also, always a joy to run into him in the neighborhood. Delightful, kind man. Peace and good memories for all!

  • Kim & Shawn Bolan Posted November 27, 2023 6:47 pm

    We have had the honor and pleasure of being next door neighbors to Leonard (and Alice) for over 20 years. There has never been anyone more kind, considerate, and friendly than Leonard. Even after he was stricken with Alzheimer’s, Leonard was never without a smile and a friendly “hello”. As a neighbor, Leonard was the first person we met in the neighborhood and was always the first one to appear when you were working on something around the yard and he might be able to help.

  • Steve Tellatin Posted November 28, 2023 7:33 am

    Rest in peace. You are missed.

  • Fr. Jim Tiegs Posted November 28, 2023 7:55 am

    Leonard was one of the finest gentlemen I have had the honor to know. We shared the 6:30 a.m. Mass for many years as he often helped. I consider a phrase from St. Francis de Sales:: to describe him “There is nothing so strong as gentleness and nothing so gentle as real strength.” He could be both a soldier and a reflection of St. Joseph.

  • Mary Weeder Posted November 28, 2023 9:15 am

    Alice and family Marvin and I send our heartfelt sympathy Len and Marvin were classmates at St Francis School in Humphrey.. I asked Marv about Len-and he said he was just a very likable kid. A good friend! and he recalls him as being a top student. His words” he was not a smart aleck”! which tells me that he exhibited kindness and thoughtfulness to those he met.
    Lenal and Jackie-your mom and I lived in the same neighborhood and had many years of fun. I so recall their wedding. Remember your dad with joy! Prayers for all of you.
    Marvin & Mary Weeder

  • Rob Carrothers Posted November 28, 2023 11:57 am

    Leonard helped many young people find thier way in the US Army. He was always professional and respectful to all people he met and interacted with. Truely a great man, husband, father, soldier and christian. I will miss him.

  • William Laughridge Posted November 28, 2023 3:44 pm

    I served with Leonard in the 561st. He could always be counted on for help. I will always remember his smile and kindness.

  • Jon & April Clark Posted November 28, 2023 4:28 pm

    We will remember Len with fond thoughts. He and Alice have been a part of our lives for many years. It has been fun to stay in touch over the years with such wonderful and kind people as the Kruse family. Picnics and Christmas parties make good memories. Len has earned his place in Heaven, and you can be sure he is helping everyone there. Our thoughts and prayers are with Alice, Lenal and Jackie (and their families). .

  • Chris Carlson Posted November 28, 2023 6:06 pm

    This is a beautiful tribute to a real leader who possessed both gentleness and strength. He served his God, his Family, his nation and his local community! Truly a loving Christian. May his memory be a blessing to all who know and loved ve him!

  • Connie Seals Posted November 29, 2023 11:26 am

    Alice, I am so sorry to hear of Len’s passing. May his soul rest in heaven. He’s earned his place in God’s comfort. I wish you peace and healing. Connie Seals.

  • Ken Voegele Posted November 30, 2023 6:28 pm

    Leonard was a great leader)boss/Soldier. We still temember the hospatality he and Alice showed us by taking usbaround in the country to look at houaes when i was getting ready to move 89th to take budget analyst position in the DCSLOG back in 2000. Will never forget your hospatality. God speed Leonard, Alice so ver sorry for the loss of your husband!

  • craig lowman Posted December 2, 2023 8:24 pm

    He left us with a remarkable legacy.

  • Genevieve Stamp Posted December 3, 2023 3:00 pm

    So sorry for your loss, Alice. I have many fond memories of brother in Christ, Leonard Kruse. Sacristan partner at 6:30am worship, vocations prayer partner on Thursday nights, and shared experience years ago that left a wonderful memory visiting the Christian Museum in Logan Iowa. A gracious man of prayer and a heart of gold. May God continue to bless Leonard and all who love his loving soul resting in the peace and light of Christ Jesus. Amen.

  • Kathy Bokelman Posted December 4, 2023 11:33 am

    God is good. I am praying for comfort and peace for you and your family. Blessings

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