Leona Mattice, 89

Published 10:06 am Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Leona Mattice, 89, passed away on Sept. 1, 2014, in Austin at ComforCare surrounded by members of her immediate family at her bedside.



Lee was born on May 22, 1925, to Marie and Edward Schumacher at their farm house in Rose Creek, Minnesota. She was one of seven siblings, which included Esther, Arnie, Irv, Lillian, Lloyd and Darrell. The family moved from Rose Creek to Austin, where Lee attended Austin High School. With World War II raging, upon graduating in 1944, Lee moved to Washington, D.C., where she worked for the FBI as a file clerk. She enjoyed telling people about meeting J. Edgar Hoover one day on an elevator at FBI Headquarters.

After returning to Austin in early 1946, she met her future husband, Don. After a whirlwind two-week romance, they got married on March 1, 1946, by a Justice of the Peace in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Lee accompanied Don on his final assignment with the Army in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and they returned to Austin in 1947. Lee and Don welcomed five children to their family between 1947 and 1954, four boys and one girl. While raising their young family in Austin, Lee worked as an optical lab technician, manager of the men’s department at Younkers and finally as the office manager for a local optician.

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Lee was known for maintaining an incredible positive mental attitude “PMA” following a number of serious medical conditions. After experimental surgery at Mayo Clinic in 1972 to repair a cerebral aneurism, Lee moved to Woodridge, Illinois, to join Don who had accepted a job as chief of police. She enjoyed their time in Woodridge and was particularly proud of being appointed Mayor Pro Tem of the Village of Woodridge.

Lee and Don moved to various parts of the country to spend time with their children and grandchildren. They retired in Las Vegas, where they lived for many years. Don and Lee ultimately returned to Austin when their daughter, Cathy, was diagnosed with a terminal form of cancer. Lee spent her final year at The Good Samaritan ComforCare Nursing Home in Austin, as a result of a fall which required hip surgery.

She is survived by her four sons Richard (Connie), Craig (Melissa), James (DeDe) and Lynn (Deborah) as well as nine grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, her sister Lillian, her best friend Delores Gosha and Rocket. She was preceded in death by her husband of 67 years, Don, her daughter Cathy, as well as her parents, one of her sisters and her four brothers.

A visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 5, at Mayer Funeral Home and a Memorial Service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 6, at Our Saviors Lutheran Church, 1600 W. Oakland Avenue, Austin, with a private interment service immediately following at Oakwood Cemetery.

Online condolences-www.mayerfh.com.