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Leo A. Kominek

April 11, 1937 — September 18, 2022

Leo A. Kominek passed away peacefully on September 18, 2022, at the age of 85. Leo was born in Chicago, Illinois on April 11, 1937, son of the late Leo A. and Sylvia (Klarkowski) Kominek. While growing up in Chicago, he met the love of his life and future wife, Anita J. Mars, at the age of 15, whom he dated for several years and then married on September 5, 1959, sharing their love together for almost 60 years.

After graduating from St. Joseph's College in Rensselaer, Indiana in 1959, he went on to achieve his Doctorate in microbiology at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana in 1964. That same year, he moved his growing family to Portage, Michigan to join The Upjohn Company, where he was a valued scientist and colleague for over 30 years. Leo and Anita raised their four children during that time, lovingly enduring all the adventures that come with a family that size.

Leo enjoyed talking baseball and suffered decades of futility while rooting for the Chicago Cubs. Triumphantly, he lived to see the lovable losers prevail when they won the World Series in 2016. Throughout the years, Leo was always willing to lend an ear to help people through their problems. After retiring from Upjohn in 1995, he decided to make it official by earning his master’s degree in psychology from Western Michigan University. For two more decades, he shared his gift of pragmatism to help people navigate life's challenges. Leo's thoughtful insights, humor and caring nature will be missed by all. He was truly a friend to all who knew him, and a confidant to many.

Leo is survived by his children, Steve (Sandra) Kominek of Kalamazoo, Laura (Alan) Valence of Lawton, Mary (Christopher) Starr of Boise, Idaho, Leo (Christine) Kominek of Kalamazoo; grandchildren, Jason, Sarah, Noah (Katie), Jeremy, Olivia (Rob), Eric, Isabelle, Alex, and Anneliese; and great grandchildren, Brayden and Weston. He was preceded in death by his parents, Leo A. and Sylvia Kominek; wife, Anita Kominek; sister, Sylvia (Benedict) Michalowski; and many beloved aunts, uncles and cousins.

A Funeral Mass will take place on Friday, September 30 at 11:00 a.m., at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, 1150 W Centre Street, Portage. The family will greet friends on Thursday, September 29, from 6-8 p.m. at Langeland Family Funeral Homes Burial & Cremation Services, 3926 S 9th St, Kalamazoo, and Friday from 10-11 a.m. immediately preceding the funeral mass at the church. In lieu of flowers, please send donations in memory of Leo to Mental Health America ( or to your favorite charity. To leave an online condolence, please visit

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Visitation

Thursday, September 29, 2022

6:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

Langeland Family Funeral Home Burial & Cremation Services

3926 South 9th Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49009

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Mass

Friday, September 30, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church

1150 West Centre Avenue, Portage, MI 49024

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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