Loss; it’s something that we all experience in some way, shape, or form over the course of our lives. We often try to define it, but can’t come up with the words. We often try to make sense of it, and come up confused. There however is one thing for certain and that is that an extraordinary man was lost this past week: Frederick W. Leonhardt.
Fred was different than most. He was born to be set apart in that not only was he great, but inspired others to find that greatness within themselves; something that is a rare quality in this world. A grandfather, father, brother, coworker, mentor, and friend, Fred had an important role in the life of every single person that he encountered and he embraced that role wholeheartedly.
An ardent advocate for his clients, no single one was more important than the other as he steadfastly conducted his business with both integrity and morality. This, however, was not just limited to his professional life but extended to his personal life as well. His kindness was unbending, his friendship unwavering, and his love everlasting. It is for this reason that every person who encountered him was left feeling both special and unique. And it is for this reason that we so dearly loved Fred.
A family man like no other, Fred’s devotion to them is something that that we could only aspire to and look upon with admiration. His children were his pride and joy, his most cherished possession, and the reason for his living. His granddaughter Madison Grace was the newest and most beautiful addition to his legacy, and her birth, something he noted as one of the most defining moments in his life. It is through them that his love will carry on in a world that will mourn his absence.
As we move forward, let us not look upon the loss of Fred with sadness, but let us look upon it with graciousness. Gracious that God brought this incredible man into our lives and that we were able to all share the unique and fun times we had with him. That we were able to be inspired by his uplifting attitude and beautiful heart that beat for each and every individual moment we spent as a part of his wonderful world.
The halls of the Capitol will never be the same, but they will always echo his presence. Fred, we know you’ll be watching over all of us, those you loved and cared for, and we will always have you in our thoughts and look forward to the one day we see you again. Fred, in your own words, I’ll leave you with this: “You sir, were a great American.”
May your everlasting light shine and may God welcome you with open arms.