March 13, 1930 - May 17, 2019
The world has lost a really good man. LeRoy Guido Gilsdorf died May 17 in Stockton, California. LeRoy was born March 13, 1930 in Lawrence, Nebraska. He was the first child of George Henry Gilsdorf and Jeanette Lena L'Heureux Gilsdorf. He graduated from Hastings St. Cecilia HS in 1948 and enlisted in the U.S. Navy serving honorably for 4 years in the Korean War. After his military service he attended the University of
Nebraska and Hastings College. He married Jennie Joan Hyde on June 11, 1955 at St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Hastings. The family moved to Merced California in 1957 and LeRoy joined the County of Merced.
LeRoy enjoyed a 31 year career with Merced County retiring in 1989 as the Merced County Auditor/Controller/Recorder and continued working with the Merced County Employees Retirement Association for a total of 50 years of service with Merced County. LeRoy led an honorable life of volunteerism and community service serving on many local and State committees and boards both with professional organizations and with service clubs in the Merced area. LeRoy's greatest joy was serving his church. LeRoy has been a member of the Knights of Columbus for 58 years. He supported his church as a member of Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church Finance Committee, was a board member of Catholic Charities of Merced, and served on the Diocese of Fresno Finance committee. Pope John II bestowed the Benemerenti Medal to him in 1996 for outstanding service to the Catholic Church In addition to his many years of service to his community and church, LeRoy enjoyed multiple hobbies including stamp collecting, coin collecting, restoring his 1928 Ford, gardening, bowling, and card playing. LeRoy was an Arthur Murray trained dancer and wowed everyone with his dance moves. Perhaps his most enjoyable hobby was golf. He was a member of Merced Golf and Country Club for many years. He played golf all over the United States and Europe while traveling with Joan in their retirement years. He was most pleased when he was selected to play The Old Course in Scotland during one of their trips. He played golf well into his 80's. He is remembered as a man of generosity with his time, talent and treasure, a man of fidelity and love for his family and community and a man of kindness. If you would like to honor LeRoy's life please consider a donation to the Alzheimer's Association (www.alz.org) in his memory or to a charity of your choice. He is preceded in death by his mother and father, two brothers, a sister-in-law and a niece. Survivors include his wife Joan, daughters Jane Lopez (Sal) and Gail Basham (Fred Selzer), grandchildren Sarah Basham and Justin LeRoy Basham all of California; and his brother Eugene and wife Betty of North Platte, NE. He leaves many cousins, nieces and nephews who he lovedvery much. In 2017 LeRoy and Joan moved from Merced to The Commons on Thornton in Stockton to be closer to family and have enjoyed an active and full life under the care and guidance of the exceptional staff and care givers. The family would like to thank The Commons on Thornton Connections for Living staff and caregivers, Optimal Hospice and ResCare (Always Caring) for their excellent care of LeRoy during the last few months of his life.
Services: A celebration of life will be held in Lodi on Tuesday, June 25, 2019 at 2:00PM at the Garden of Freedom in Cherokee Memorial Park, located at Harney Lane at Hwy 99, Lodi, CA 95240. A Rosary and funeral Mass will be held in Merced on Thursday, June 27, 2019 at 9:30AM. at Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church, 459 W. 21st street, Merced, CA.
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Cherokee Memorial is honored to serve the Gilsdorf family.