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Leonard M. Wlodarczyk, teacher, coach May 31,1925 -- Dec. 22, 2006

Leonard M. Wlodarczyk of Lackawanna, a former teacher and soccer coach, died Friday in Mercy Hospital. He was 81.

A graduate of the Lackawanna High School Class of 1943, Mr. Wlodarczyk was a 1951 graduate of Ithaca College. He worked as driver's education teacher at Lackawanna High School from 1969 until his retirement in 1990. He was also a school soccer coach.

Mr. Wlodarczyk served in Navy during World War II and participated in the D-Day landing on Omaha Beach.

He was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion and the LST Association.

Mr. Wlodarczyk was also known for having played the role of Santa Claus for many years in local schools and hospitals.

"He was a big-stature man and made a perfect Santa Claus," said his wife, Ellen.

In addition to his wife of 55 years, the former Ellen Ryszka, Mr. Wlodarczyk is survived by four daughters, Joyce, Marcia, Anne Marie and Ellen, and three sons, Michael, John and Leonard Jr.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday in Our Lady of Victory Basilica, Ridge Road and South Park Avenue, Lackawanna.

[schulman]

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