Leland Bernt

Alton | Friday, September 4 2020 |

Leland Charles Bernt, born April 22, 1933 peacefully passed September 4, 2020 at  Alton Memorial Rehab and Therapy Center.

Lee was born in Golden Eagle, IL. He lived in Calhoun County with his parents, Andrew and Mary (Bain) Bernt and his sisters, Anna Rice and Edna Ryder. The family moved to Alton in 1942. At the age of sixteen, he went to work at Leimbach Auto. He married Pat Darr on July 11, 1952. They had three daughters, Carrie Mellen (Ex-husband, David) Brenda (Troy) Vernatti and Barb Dunning (Ron, deceased). They celebrated 40 wonderful years together. Pat passed away in December of 1992.

He served two years in the United States Army. Upon his return, he continued working for Leimbach Auto. He bought the business in 1965 and opened as Lee Bernt Auto Service. He and Pat had many long time and loyal customers. He was known for being honest, fair and many times going above and beyond in serving his client's needs. He was known as the transmission specialist. He retired in 1998. He enjoyed his retirement helping family and friends and looking for another traveling opportunity. He was a huge NASCAR fan and attended many race events. Lee was always willing to lend a helping hand.

Lee married  Mary Kaufman in 2004. She survives. They attended Our Lady Queen of Peace Church and were members of the Mississippi Valley Garden Club. They found pleasure in gardening, traveling and family time.

He is survived by his three daughters and his two sisters. He is also survived by his four grandchildren, Daniel Dunning, Sarah (Eric) Angleton, Angela (Derek) Austill, and Gabriela Mellen.  Six greatchildren; Ryan, Matthew, Andrew, Benjamin, Korey and Jacob.

 He is also survived by Mary's children, Vickie, Debbie and Larry;  her grandchildren, Marissa, Ashley, Brian, Ashley and Christina; and her great grandchildren Andrew, Sean, Blake, Ryley and Piper.

Lee was loved and will be missed by many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, an infant brother, his beloved wife Pat, Second wife Jean McCleland, and his son-in-law Ron Dunning.

Due to COVID retrictions, a total of twenty-five people will be allowed in the building during the visitation from 9 a.m. until time of service at 11 a.m. Saturday, September 12, 2020 at Elias, Kallal and Schaaf 2521 Edwards St. Alton, IL.  Burial will be at Rose Lawn Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society.

Online register book and condolences may be found at

Obit Provided By:
Elias, Kallal & Schaaf Funeral Home

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