Leonard “Len” Rood went to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ on October 17th ,2022. He was a resident of Country Place in Independence.
Len was born in Cooperstown, North Dakota February 7, 1934, to Milton and Myrtle (Erlandson) Rood. The family moved several times in his childhood as his father advanced his career. The family lived in Gary, Indiana where Len attended Horace Mann School. In 1949, the family moved to Spokane, Washington where Len graduated from Lewis and Clark High School in 1952. After high school, Len attended Indiana University and majored in Business Administration. During his time there he was a “house boy” at the Alpha Phi sorority where he met the love of his life Shirley Olsen. Following his graduation from IU in 1955, he and Shirley were married in Shirley’s hometown of Charlestown, Indiana on August 27th, 1955. After they were married, Len continued his education at IU earning a master’s degree in business in 1956.
During his time at Indiana University, Len was a member of the Air Force ROTC. Following graduation, Len commissioned in the Air Force as a Second Lieutenant stationed in Harlingen, Texas, he was a navigator on the Boeing KC97A tanker plane that refueled the vital long range B52 bomber. After leaving the Air Force, Len found work in the aerospace industry in California and Washington for many years. Len was a manager at North American Aviation which built the man on the moon projects.
His career then took him to the petroleum industry where he spent 22 years with ARCO. His ARCO experience brought he and Shirley to Independence for 5 years in the 1980s.
In 1965, Len and Shirley welcomed their son, David to the family. Four years later the family was blessed with a daughter, Sheryl, born in 1969.
In 1973 Len, Shirley and their children moved to Bellevue, WA, to be near Len’s brother, sister, and parents where he worked for Sundstrand for one year. While in Bellevue, both Len and Shirley had a transforming salvation experience by accepting the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. Len and Shirley’s lives were forever changed as they embraced this new relationship with Christ. Len and Shirley became a different people from then on. They shared a new commitment to their Christian faith by attending church and bible studies for the rest of their lives.
Over his lifetime, Len had a successful career in business. However, he would tell you that his most important accomplishments were his love for Christ and his love for his family. Len and Shirley were together for 69 year and married for 67. Len is survived by his children David (Jenny) Rood, Sheryl (Yasir) Suhail, sister Iva Lou Chestnut, brother Dennis (Nancy) Rood, nine grandchildren, and five great grandchildren.
He is preceded in death by his parents and his wife Shirley.
Len will be buried with full military honors in honor of his service to his country. He is laid to rest next to his wonderful wife of 67 years, Shirley and they are once again united in Heaven. A Celebration of Len’s Life will take place at Mount Hope Cemetery on Thursday, November 10th at 2:00 pm. Remembrances may be made in his name to Young Life, younglife.org (a Christian youth ministry) or Harry Hynes Hospice. To leave the family a special message of condolence, please visit, www.pottsfuneralhome.com.