Leland James Tillman, son of Darwin and Letha (Linquist) Tillman, was born on October 24, 1933, on the family farm near Essex in Page County, Iowa. He entered into rest on July 19, 2020 at Elms Heights Care Center in Shenandoah, Iowa at the age of 86 years, 8 months, 25 days.
A celebration of life memorial service for Lee will be held on Wednesday, July 22, 2020 at 10:30 am at the Fremont Lutheran Church at Nyman. There will be open calling at the funeral home beginning at 12:00 pm, Tuesday, July 21, 2020 and ending at 6:00 pm Tuesday evening. The family will not be present during these hours. Inurnment will take place in the Mount Hope Cemetery. Memorials in Lee's name are being directed to the Shenandoah Food Pantry.
In his earlier years, he attended Excelsior Country School and High Prairie Country School where he would ride a horse to school. He went on to attend Essex High School where he graduated with the class of 1952. After high school he enlisted into the U.S. Army where he served from December 7, 1953 until December 6, 1955 and received the National Defense Medal.
On October 14, 1954, Leland was united in marriage to Patricia Ann Drake at the Essex Presbyterian Church. They temporarily made their home in Belton, Texas until moving back to Essex where they farmed. They moved into Essex in 1975, where they have lived since.
A couple of years after serving in the military he worked for a veterinarian by the name of Dr. R.L. Williamson before he went on to be a farmer until the day he was called home.
Leland was active in his community by serving on the Farmers Telephone board, the local saddle club, and the Essex Community Club. He also served on the Fremont Lutheran Church board and the Mt. Hope Cemetery board. Leland was proud to have served as the Essex Labor Day Grand Marshall in 2013, along with his wife, Pat.
His hobbies were the love of horses and farming, watching the Nebraska Cornhuskers play football, going to the Sidney Rodeo, and watching his favorite television show “Gunsmoke.”
Preceding Leland in death were his parents Darwin and Letha Tillman. He is survived by his wife of over 65 years, Pat Tillman; two children, Jeannine Liljedahl and husband Ernie and Tim Tillman and wife Susie, all of Essex; four grandchildren, Shelby Tillman of Kansas City, KS; Trent Tillman and Karlee, Kaleb Tillman and wife Bethann, all of Essex, IA, Chelsea Ewigman and husband Tony of Kearney, MO; four great grandchildren Brayden Tillman, Brenna Bontrager, Shelby Auten, and Braelyn Auten; brother, Kenneth Tillman and Delores of Lake Ridge, VA; along with a host of nieces, nephews and cousins; other relatives and many friends.
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