O’Rourke & O’Rourke
Inc. Funeral Home

25 River Street
Salamanca, NY 14779
phone: (716) 945-4760
fax: (716) 945-4222

Leonard F. Kurlej

Leonard F. "Lex" Kurlej, 85, of 15 Long Entry Road, Chepachet, Rhode Island, formerly of Salamanca, New York died Sunday, October 7, 2012 at the Overlook Nursing Home, Pascoag, Rhode Island.

Born September 3, 1927 in Salamanca, New York, he was the son of the late Joseph and Sophia Skrzypczak Kurlej. He was married on January 7, 1955 in Little Valley, New York to the former Jo Ann Rodgers, who survives.

Mr. Kurlej was a veteran of the United States Navy, serving from 1945 through 1953, during both World War II and the Korean War. He was awarded the World War II Victory Medal, the American Theater Campaign Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, and the Navy Occupation Service Medal.

He was employed as a furniture maker at the former Fancher Furniture in Salamanca, New York, and as a bridge repairman for the N.Y.S. Department of Transportation in Little Valley, New York prior to his retirement.

He was a member of the Holy Cross Athletic Club and the American Legion Hughes-Skiba Post #535.

Surviving besides his wife are: a daughter, Alexis (Mike) Heller, Chepachet, RI; 4 grandchildren, Alyssa Heller, Scituate, RI, Kristina Heller, Woburn, MA, Aaron Heller, Schoharie, NY, and Alexander Heller, Chepachet, RI; 1 sister, Patricia (Ronald) LeBlanc, Salamanca, NY; 1 brother, Stanley (Gerri) Kurlej, Cherry Hill, NJ; several nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by 3 sisters, Helen Kohaniec, Theresa Paciorkowski, Mary Kurlej, and a brother, John Kurlej.

Friends may attend a memorial mass in Our Lady of Peace Parish on Saturday, October 20, 2012 at 11 A.M. with Rev. Patrick Melfi, pastor, as celebrant. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the O'Rourke & O'Rourke Inc Funeral Home, 25 River Street, Salamanca, New York.

Burial will be in St. Bonaventure Cemetery, Allegany, New York.

Full military honors will be conducted by the members of the American Legion Hughes-Skiba Post #535 and the Veterans of Foreign Wars John F. Ahrens Post #5296.

E-condolences can be sent to john@orourke-orourke.com or posted to facebook.com/onofh.