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Leo T. Wendling, Jr.

Leo T. Wendling, Jr. Leo was born on October 17, 1918 in Trinidad, CO. The son of Leo Theodore Wendling, Sr. and Daphne Mae (Watts) Wendling. Shortly after Leo’s arrival, the family moved from Trinidad to Halstead, Kansas where he was raised and attended public schools, graduating from Halstead High School in 1936.

Upon moving to Manhattan in 1936, he met the love of his life, Ruby Ann David, they were united in marriage on February 14, 1942, in Topeka, KA. They were married for 70 years.

Leo attended Kansas State University from 1936 to 1942, earning a Bachelors of Science degree in Agricultural Engineering, and obtained his professional engineering license for the State of Kansas. After graduation, Leo was drafted into the Army Corps of Engineers, attended OCS and became a 1st lieutenant where he served during WWII, from May 21, 1942 until April 5, 1946. Shortly after Leo was released from active duty, he joined the academic field at Kansas State University as a professor Emeritus of Extension Biological and Agricultural Engineering where he taught for 35 years. During his career at KSU, Leo rose to become the State Leader in Extension Agriculture Engineering for Kansas State University, and retired on Dec 17, 1981. In addition to being on the faculty at KSU, Leo joined the US Army Reserves in July of 1949 where he served his country until retiring on January 25, 1974, as a Lieutenant Colonel.

During his tenure at KSU, Leo continued growing his personal academic goals and completed his Masters in Agriculture Engineering in 1956. Leo had a passionate love for Manhattan and Kansas State University instilling his KSU pride into his son who later attended and graduated from Kansas State University. Leo and his family loved the atmosphere and culture in Manhattan and KSU, attending plays, musicals, lectures, and sporting events, especially KSU football. Leo was an active member of the Manhattan community where he and his wife Ruby, were members of the Manhattan Country Club, bridge clubs, and art/craft events. Leo and Ruby loved to travel and play golf, participating in numerous golf tournaments both locally and out of town. Leo was a member of the ASAE Society for Engineers, American Legion, Flint Hills Chapter TROA (retired officers association), NARFF, Phi Kappa Fraternity, and a member of the Seven Dolors Catholic Church in Manhattan, KS.

Leo was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend. He was a very devoted grandfather who was very much involved in his grandchildren's lives. When the grandchildren were younger they often spent spring break and summer vacations with their grandparents, building forts in the trees around his house, playing golf, fishing, and swimming. Leo was tireless when playing with them and made sure they stayed busy with activities during their visits and when he visited them.

In 2013, Leo moved to Richardson, TX to be closer to his son and family. He made many friends in his assisted living facility and enjoyed playing bridge, listening to music, and watching sporting events. Leo was a fairly stoic man who enjoyed life and never complained. When asked what he was doing today he would respond “just doing my normal,” however, he would always let you know when it was meal time.

Leo is survived by his sisters Margaret Harris of Topeka, Kansas and Vivian Bush of North Hollywood, CA. His son, Phillip L. Wendling and his wife Darlene of Richardson, Texas. Also surviving are four grandsons, Cory (Lindsay) Wendling of Nevada, Texas; BJ (Stacy) Wendling of Prosper, Texas; Ryan (Katheryn) Wendling of The Colony, Texas; Trevor (Anna) Wendling of Richardson, Texas; and three great-grandchildren: Parker and Piper Wendling of Prosper, Texas and Phillip Henry Wendling of Richardson, Texas. He is also survived by numerous nieces, nephews, grandnieces and nephews, and extended family whom he all loved dearly.

Leo was preceded in death by his wife, Ruby Ann (David) Wendling, his parents Leo Theodore Wendling, Sr. and Daphne Mae (Watts) Wendling, and his brother Eugene Wendling.

Visitation is from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Rosary will be at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, February 3, 2021, at Yorgensen-Meloan-Londeen Funeral Home, Manhattan, KS.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m., Thursday, February 4, 2021, at the Seven Dolors Catholic Church, at the corner of Juliette and Pierre Streets in Manhattan. Father Kerry Ninemire will be the celebrant. Interment will follow in the Kansas Veterans' Cemetery at Fort Riley, Manhattan, KS. A luncheon will follow after the burial at Seven Dolors Church.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Terry C. Johnson Center for Basic Cancer Research at Kansas State University. Contributions may be left in care of the Yorgensen-Meloan-Londeen Funeral Home, 1616 Poyntz Avenue, Manhattan, Kansas 66502.

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