Wilbur C. ‘Bill’ Leicht - Beloved husband, father, father-in-law, grandfather, great grandfather and uncle.
On Thursday, May 6, 2021, Wilbur C. Leicht of Lakewood passed away four days before his 99th birthday. Born in Newark to the late Henry and Clara Leicht, he lived most of his life in Newark before moving to Lakewood 30 years ago. An Army veteran, he served in the 11th Armored Division in the European Theater of Operations; post-war he continued his service in successive American Legion leadership roles, from Commander of East Orange Post 73, to Essex County Vice Commander. His work career took him from running the body shop at the old Mallon’s Pontiac in East Orange to an insurance adjuster for Motor Club of America.
Along the way he met another vet, Mary Whitley, and their subsequent marriage and life together produced a grand family of which they were enormously proud: pre-deceased by Mary, Bill is survived by his sister, Louise Heroux of Woonsocket, RI; children Margaret (John) Vanore of Lakewood, NJ; Barbara Romano of Lakewood, NJ; Robert (Nancy) Leicht of Barnegat, NJ; Catherine (Glenn) Crane of Colonia, NJ; Mary (Russell) Fenton of Mentor, OH; William (Yevette) Leicht of Bethlehem, PA; Stephen (Lisa) Leicht of Cranston, RI; and Liz Leicht of Scotch Plains. There are also 14 grandchildren, 17 great grandchildren, and 3 great/great grandchildren.
A friend to many, one of his favorite songs was the old spiritual “If I could help somebody,” an ethic which led to countless volunteer hours at Sacred Heart Church in Vailsburg where he was a member of the Holy Name Society and the Knights of Columbus; later, he worked at the help desk of Ocean Medical Center in Brick until he was 96.
Bill Leicht was a truly rich man, whose children would run into his arms even when his hands were empty.
Visitation at the Leonardis Memorial Home, Inc., 210 Ridgedale Avenue, Florham Park on Tuesday from 2-4 & 7-9pm. Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic and Occupancy limitations, visitors are asked to pay their respects and then exit, to allow others to enter the building. Masks are required and all are to practice social distancing.
The Funeral mass will be held on Wednesday, 11:15am at St. Rose of Lima Church in East Hanover, followed by the interment at Gate of Heaven Cemetery. For those unable to attend, the funeral mass will be offered on a live virtual feed by clicking: https://saintroseoflimachurch.org/ and scrolling down to live mass.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The American Legion Veterans & Children Foundation by visiting: @mylegion.org