Leon LazarJune 10, 1925 ~ January 5, 2018 (age 92)
Leon Lazar June 1925 - January 2017
Leon Lazar died peacefully on January 5th. Leon was the beloved husband of Luz (Lucy) Lazar. He is survived by three daughters, Ana, Amy and Leora and three step-children, Martha, Michelle and José. Together Leon and Lucy have ten grandchildren, Aaron, Rachel, Jonathan, Max, Miles, Zachary, Sidney, Drew, Tyler, and Cade, and four great-grandchildren with two on the way.
One of the pivotal experiences in Leon’s life was serving in the Navy during WWII. He enlisted at just seventeen years of age and was stationed on a cruiser called the USS Boise in the Pacific. Up until the end of his life he told the story of helplessly watching a Japanese kamikasi overhead, when seemingly out of nowhere a US plane shot it down. Leon’s life was saved that day, a powerful experience for any teenager. Leon was proud of his service in the war, and the fact that he met Gen. MacArthur. Leon was honored a few years ago at a Bakersfield Condors game in front of a stadium full of cheering people.
Leon was a man of many talents. He had a beautiful singing voice and performed locally at various community entertainment events where he was master of ceremony, singer and of course, comedian. He was always entertaining. His creative imagination also led him to author several short-stories and books, one which he self-published, “The Vindicator.”
Another of his many talents was playing ping-pong. He was an excellent player and continued to play until the end of his life. Our family is grateful to Leon’s dear friend, Mike who continued to play singles with our Dad after he was no longer able to move quickly enough to play doubles. As a singles player he continued to be a formidable opponent. Playing sports was an important part of Leon’s life and in retirement he regularly played tennis, golf, bowling, ping-pong and softball. He was a sought after pitcher and a captain of his softball team. Leon was an exemplar of successful aging, adaption and remaining in the game.
Leon was also a successful businessman. In his first career he took his watchmaking post-war training and established several jewelry businesses both in New York and California. Then he met the love of his life, Luz (Lucy) and together they expanded their jewelry business, and opened an award-winning restaurant in San Diego. Both Leon and Luz had a wonderful sense of adventure traveling and enjoying life to the fullest.
Leon was always pleasant and positive he will be greatly missed. Funeral will be held March 3rd at 10:45 am at Riverside National Cemetery.