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Obituary: Leo James “Jim” Kensler

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Leo James “Jim” Kessler (1929 - 2017)

Leo James “Jim” Kessler (1929 – 2017)

His Legacy…Kensler, Leo James “Jim”, age 87 life-long resident of Manchester, MI passed away February 18, 2017 at St. Joseph Mercy Health. He was born on March 29, 1929 in Manchester at the family home, the son of Erwin A. and Louise (Kaig) Kensler. Jim proudly served his country in the U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict. He married Helen Jean Vail in Chelsea, MI on April 18, 1953 and she preceded him in death. He was a member of Emanuel United Church of Christ and served the Manchester Community as a firefighter for 42 years with 21 of those years as the Fire Chief. He was also a retiree of Ford Motor Co. in 1994 as a skilled tradesman and a member of the Manchester American Legion. Jim leaves a legacy of service and dedication to his family and community and he will be lovingly remembered.

His Family…Jim is survived by his children: Kim (Jim) Prager, Kris (fiancé – Dawn) Kensler, Kurt Kensler, Kyle (Keith) Johnson; siblings: Richard (Trudy) Kensler, Patricia (Joe) Fitzgerald and Mary (Harry) Johnson; 5 grandchildren: Kelsey Johnson, Joshua (Pam) Kensler, Kaitlyn Shutes, David (Katie Schings) Kensler, Sydni (Brian) Oliveto; great granddaughter: Lucy Kensler; sister-in-laws: Sue Kensler, Pranee Kensler and numerous nieces, nephews and friends. In addition to his wife, Jim was preceded in death by his brothers: Robert, William, Erwin and Pete.

His Farewell…Jim’s family greeted friends on Thursday, February 23, 2017 at the Borek Jennings Funeral Home, Legacy Event Center from 2 to 8pm. On Friday, the family gathered at 10am at Emanuel United Church of Christ until the time of Jim’s Community Farewell at 11am with Rev. Dr. David A. Williams officiating. In honor of Jim, memorial donations may be shared with the Dutchman Fire Association or St. Joseph Mercy Hospital. Please sign Jim’s guestbook at or leave a message of comfort for the Kensler family by calling 877-231-7900.

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