Leonard J. "Len" Hildebrand

Leonard J. "Len" Hildebrand, 79, passed away on Monday, Feb. 4, 2008 at the Samaritan Health Center, West Bend.

He was born to John and Marie (Smith) Hildebrand on Feb 2, 1929 in Sheboygan.

His mother passed away from cancer when Len was quite young, and his father married Delores Dries.

Len grew up in Sheboygan Falls. He loved football and played on his high school football and track teams.

After graduation, Len joined the U.S. Navy Air Force, serving from 1948-1952. He achieved the rank of Petty Officer 3rd Class.

Len married Marge Sprenkle Lauer in Milwaukee in May, 1954. They had a son, Mark Allen who passed away early in his twenties.

He married Joyce Ruffing Eisentraut in June, 1963 and instantly became the parent of Bill and Dawn.

Len was a machinist for 38 years, serving his apprenticeship at Kearney and Trecker Corp.

Len worked at various locations through the years including Chrysler Outboard, Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory (LASL), Barton Products and retired in 1994 at Enerpack in Butler.

Len was involved in Big Brothers Big Sisters. He taught religious education classes for several years at St. Mary’s Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in West Bend and was very active in the church throughout the years.

After retirement, Len kept quite busy working part time at Fleet Farm, Stein Gardens and for Washington County doing odd jobs.

He was diagnosed shortly after with Alzheimer’s Disease.

His hobbies included sketching, painting, woodworking, hunting and fishing.

He loved his walks through the outdoors and enjoyed the peacefulness of nature.

Len always looked forward to his fishing trips to Canada with his brother.

Len is survived by his beloved wife, Joyce; a stepson, William (Sharon) Hildebrand of Tucson, Ariz.; a stepdaughter, Dawn (Mark) Puerling of West Bend; grandchildren, Brian (Emily) Puerling and April (Paul) Truttschel; a brother, Jerome (Janice) Hildebrand; a sister, Jo Ann (Don) Chase of Ferryville; his mother-in-law, Evelyn Ruffing; and a sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Carol and Bob Noll.

He will be deeply missed by his family.

Len was preceded in death by his parents; his stepmother, Delores; his son, Mark; his father-in-law, Lenor Ruffing; and a grandson, Adam Michael Puer-ling.

A funeral service will be held on Sunday, Feb. 10, at 4:30 p.m. at the Phillip Funeral Home, 1420 W. Paradise Drive, West Bend, with Deacon Dan Schroeder officiating.

Visitation will be at the funeral home on Sunday from 2:30 until 4:30 p.m.


The family would like to extend a special thank you to the staff of the Samaritan Health Center third and fourth floors and Cedar Community Hospice for the wonderful care given to Len.