John Edward Leheney of Lee’s Summit, MO died December 31, 2022 at the age of 94 of Alzheimer’s disease and natural causes.
John was born November 17, 1928 in Leominster, MA. He graduated from Leominster High School in 1946, and served in the U.S. Army from 1946 to 1948, stationed in Italy.
He attended Arnold College in Bridgeport, CT and graduated from Central Missouri State College. He met his wife Barbara Hyatt there and they were married in 1953 in Lee’s Summit, MO.
John taught at Corder High School for one year and became a teacher, counselor and debate coach at Fort Osage High School. John received his Master’s degree in Counseling at the University of Missouri-Columbia in June 1961.
The family moved to Festus, MO, near St. Louis, in 1967, when John was a counselor at Jefferson County Community College. They returned to Independence in 1970, when Joh became a counselor at Maple Woods Community College in Kansas City. John and Barbara moved to Lee’s Summit in 1986. John worked at Maple Woods until his retirement in 1994.
They had three sons; John, Mark and Paul, born in 1954, 1957 and 1960, respectively.
John is survived by Barbara and his three sons; John, with his wife Diane in Lee’s Summit; Mark with his wife, Linda, in Arlington, VA; and Paul in Grandview, MO.
He is also survived by grandsons Christopher and Trevor Leheney, and by granddaughters Michelle Mix and Emma Miles. He is also survived by his great-grandsons Tucker and Liam Leheney, and great-granddaughters, Lucy Leheney and Harper Mix.
He is the author of the book To Maine, With Moxie, and history of the American beverage, Moxie, and numerous articles on the topic. He is also the co-author of Maple Woods: The Early Years, a history of Maple Woods Community College.
John was a member of, and served on the Session of, First Presbyterian Church in Lee’s Summit, MO.
John was an avid antique collector, writer, painter, tennis player and coach, pool player, poet, song-writer, traveler across the U.S. and Europe, and Chiefs fan.
A private family memorial service is planned for the spring at Lee’s Summit Historical Cemetery.
I worked with John at Maple Woods for many years. He was an enjoyable colleague with unforgettable sense of humor. He was very respected by fellow employees and well liked by students. With deepest sympathy to his family.
Mr. Leheney had a very positive impact on my life as one of my teachers at Fort Osage High School. He was a class act. I offer my sincere condolences to his surviving family. Thanks, John. RIP.
Dear Barbara, I was saddened to run across John’s obituary in The Kansas City Star. I’ve been thinking about those years when we met often to chat and dine together. John was such a gentleman; Ken and I appreciated his humor and poetry. He introduced me to burnt ends! I know you and your family will be missing him. If we were in Kansas City, I would give you a hug.
Dear Barbara, I was sadden to hear about John. He was such a lovely man with a great sense of humor. I remember so many good times the four of us had, at school and later. I’m sorry we all lost touch. Please accept my sincere condolences and I hope you are well and in good health.