Covering the Land of Lincoln

John Leonard Obituary (1930 – 2022) – Rockford, IL

dr John T. Leonard, Sr., Rockford, IL, passed away peacefully at age 92 on June 21, 2022, at Alden Debes Health Care Center, surrounded by their caring staff. He was born in Rockford on March 27, 1930, to the proud parents, Eugene and Rhoda (Steniford) Leonard. He was preceded in death by his loving wife, Martha Stern Leonard, his brothers, Eugene (Doris), William (Ruth), his sister, Patricia Leonard Scott (Jack) and sons, Anthony and John T. Leonard, Jr. Dr. Leonard attended Georgetown University in Washington, DC, where he graduated in 1952, the class treasurer and most valuable player in basketball. He was endearingly known as the “Wabbit” by his classmates and teammates. After graduation, Dr. Leonard attended medical school at the University of Illinois-Chicago where he graduated in 1956. While in medical school, he met Dr. Dean Jones, lifelong best friend and partner in their private practice in Rockford. dr Leonard was a veteran and served in the Army after completing medical school. He married the love of his life, Martha Louise Stern in Rockford on May 21, 1955. They were happily married for 58 years and shared many laughs-there are only a handful of photos where he is not making the goofy “Leonard face”. dr Leonard left the Army in 1964, where he reached the rank of Captain after 8 years of service. He moved back to Rockford to start his private practice, OB/Gyn and Associates, with partners, Dr. Heinemeyer, Dr. Bowers, and Dr. Jones. dr Leonard and his partners had a successful practice in the Rockford community, helping women of all ages and families for over 40 years. He served as the Medical President at Rockford Memorial Hospital for a few terms and was president of the Winnebago County Medical Society in the 1980’s. dr Leonard was adored by his many patients. His sense of humor was one of his great attributes. John took great pleasure in volunteering at the free clinic and giving back to his community throughout his long career. His children often joked that the hospital was his first home but his wife had his favorite comforts, always coffee and peanut butter and jelly waiting for him when he got home. dr Leonard was an avid golfer and fisherman and could often be found playing a round of golf at Rockford Country Club with his best friend from fourth grade, John Mayhall. He especially loved spending time with his family and friends and found goodness in all.
John leaves behind his loving children, Kathryn (Patrick) Walter of Eden Prairie, MN, Stephen Leonard of Portland TX, Brian Leonard of Santa Barbara, CA, Michelle Leonard of Sarasota, FL, and Jennifer Leonard of Austin, TX; his grandchildren, Nichole (Scott) Kieffer, Alexander (Ellen) Walter, Danielle Walter, Anthony and Anna Leonard, Andrew and Daniel Leonard and Joseph and John Stopper. dr Leonard was also blessed with a large extended family along with many friends who will dearly miss him. A special thank you to his Mercy Hospice nurse, Karen, and her team who gave Dad dignity, love, and expert compassionate care for the past three years.
A Celebration of Life service will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, August 27, 2022, at Fitzgerald Funeral Home and Crematory, Mulford Chapel, 1860 S. Mulford Rd. Rockford, IL. Burial in Calvary Catholic Cemetery. Visitation will be from 10:00 AM until time of the service. Share online condolences at
To send flowers to the family of Dr. John, please visit our floral store.

Published by Fitzgerald Funeral Home & Crematory LTD – Mulford Chapel on Jun. 29, 2022.

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