Leland Erbe

Leland Erbe

Leland ‘Lee’ Erbe of Otsego, MI passed away Saturday, June 16, 2012 in Kalamazoo. Lee was born November 4, 1930 in Port Sanilac, MI the son of Howard and Myrtle (Pohzehl) Erbe. Following high school Lee enlisted in the Army and spent 3 years in Germany during the Korean War. Following his time in the service he met and married Sylvia (McLane) on May 15, 1954 in Sandusky, MI. He began working for International Harvester out of Saginaw and had opportunities in different states as he moved up the ranks until he purchased his own truck dealership in IL in 1967. He sold the dealership in the early 1970’s so that he and his family could move back to Michigan. Back in Michigan he stayed with IH until 1980 when he began working in sales permitting for Natural Gas Exploration until his retirement in 1990. He continued to stay busy volunteering to help people in need. Lee and Sylvia spent winters in Lake Travis, TX. He was a member of the American Legion, VFW, Elks and was a faithful attender of the First Congregational Church of Otsego. Lee enjoyed golfing, playing cards, and his morning coffee with his buddies. He loved spending time with his friends but most of all his family. Once he made a friend it was important to Lee to keep in touch no matter where they lived.

Surviving are his wife Sylvia; his children, Allyson (Ian) Davidson of TX, David (Melisa) of  TX, Scott Erbe  and Paul (Heather) Erbe both of Kalamazoo; 8 grandchildren, Joshua, Jonah, Collin, Alexandra, Sebastian, Atticus, Ethan and Evan. Lee was preceded in death by his parents and by an infant son, Thomas.

Cremation has taken place. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, June 23, 2012 at 11:00am at the First Congregational Church, Otsego with Pastor David Youngs officiating. Military Honors by VFW Post #3030. Burial of ashes will take place at a later date in Greenwood Cemetery, Sandusky, MI.

Memorial contributions may be made to the First Congregational Church or the Lutheran Hour.

Messages of condolence may be left at www.WinkelFuneralHome.com

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Messages of Condolence

  1. Len and Nancy Miller says:

    Sylvia and Family:

    We are truly sorry for your loss. Lee was a very nice, kind and gentle man, and a joy to be around. It was a treat when you two were in Texas and we got together and played games. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

  2. Tara says:

    Paul and Heather,

    My deepest condolences in your great loss. God be with you in the days, weeks and months to follow. You are in my heart, in prayer and being lifted. My sincerest condolences to your entire family. God bless you all.

  3. Paul Palmer says:

    I will miss my “coffee buddy” at Hardings. He was always fun to be around. So sorry for your loss, Sylvia. If you need anything give a yell.

    Paul xxoo

  4. Lonna Peterson says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with you, Allyson, and your entire family. I only had the pleasure of meeting your Dad once, but could tell that he was a foundation stone of a strong and loving family. I know you will miss him.

  5. Lynn Bronkema says:

    My Dear Slyvia and Family,

    So sorry for the lost of Lee. Just knowing now that he is in God’s arms. He has been taken home and has no more pain or health issues. He will be surly missed. Lee was such a kind and friendly person and made one feel like a good friend the moment one met him. God Bless you and your family.
    Sincerely, Lynn

  6. Harry Krause says:

    Sylvia and family
    So sorry to read about your loss in the Times Herald this am.
    Don’t know if you heard I was not at Immanuel any more- have missed the congregation and have missed you all for a long time. But the Lord has plans for us all and we must trust Him to guide us. God’s blessings to you all! Harry Krause

  7. Gail Snyder says:

    Sylvia and family,

    I am sorry to hear of the passing of Lee. I did not know Lee but Sylvia has become a very dear friend to me. She is a beautiful person and I am sure Lee was one of the same. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family. God has taken our good men away from us- he must feel he needs them more than we do. Lose of any kind is never easy and if you ever need anything-you know where to find me.

    Good Bless you all.

    I love ya beautiful lady.

    gail Snyder

  8. Ron &Maria Bright says:



  9. Terry and Lois Ailes says:

    Paul and Heather, We are so sorry to hear of your father’s passing. I know how hard that is. We are thinking of you and praying for both of you and for your kids. We are asking God to bring your comfort, strength for all the arrangements and working with family, and peace. If there is a way that we can help, please let us know. Love, Terry and Lois

  10. Carol A. McLean says:

    Dear Sylvia and Family,

    I am so sorry to hear of Lee’s passing. It is never easy, no matter what the age. Will never forget our times together in Freeport, IL. You were good friends and neighbors. May your hearts be lifted with God’s strength.

    Am thinking of each and everyone of you.

    Hugs and prayers,

  11. Jack & Jan Mendel says:

    Dear Sylvia and family:
    We are so sorry to learn of Lee’s passing. Your whole family has always had a special place in our hearts. Lee’s smile and happy countenance truly exhibited his faith and unselfish love for others. May God give you comfort and peace at this difficult time.

  12. Terry L. Nelson/BFM says:

    Sylvia and Family

    I am so sorry for your Loss. Lee was such a special person to me. I was so glad I got to know him. Sylvia you are so special to me I knew when we met at Curves we would always be close. There will always be a special place for you in my heart. I so wish I could be at the Service on Saturday. My thoughts and prayers will be with all of you. God Bless You Love Always Terry

  13. Norma Jean (Albrecht) Cutler says:

    So sorry to hear of Lee’s passing. We were distant cousins and also in the graduating class of 1948 from Sandusky High School. I have lived in Newark, DE for the past 50 years. Have been to several reunions — not sure if Lee was to the last one that I attended in the ’80’s.

  14. Ed and Sharon (Gardner) Smerer says:

    Sylvia and Family:

    We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are for
    you and your family at this time and later. May God grant you
    comfort and peace at this time. I wish I could give you a hug,
    like we did at Blue Water Hospice.

    God Bless to All,
    Ed and Sharon (Gardner) Smerer

  15. Julia Reneker says:

    Aunt Sylvia, So sorry for your loss. I will keep you and all your family in my prayers. I remember when my Dad would take us to visit you in Alpena . I always enjoyed our visits.
    Julia reneker

  16. Steve Whitton says:


    My deepest sympathy and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time. May the loving memories of your dad be with you always.

    Most Sincerely,

    Steve Whitton

  17. Fred and Claire Krause says:

    We missed you two this winter, we expected to see you pop up at bridge, but Mary and Larry told us you were not coming. Maybe we’ll see you next winter. We are very sorry of your loss. I will pray for you and your family
    Love, Fred and Claire.

  18. Joyce & Don Wilbanks says:

    Dear Sylvia,
    You and your family are in our prayers and thoughts. We always
    looked forward to you & Lee coming to Texas and joining us at
    Christ Our Savior in Lago Vista. You were a very special part of
    our church family. Lee was always pleasant to be around and
    we shall miss him but know he’s with the Lord. We were privileged to have known him.

    Joyce & Don Wilbanks

  19. Marilyn Batkie says:

    Dear Sylvia,
    So sorry to read that you are facing one of the realities of life, the loss of a loved one. As I read the obituary, I couldn’t help but think of our “younger years”, such as the four of us having dinner (Freda, Delores, and you and I) and if there was a special dessert the waitress (Nora, I think) saving enough for the four of us. Lee’s family were such good neighbors to us. —And there was also a party at Lee’s house, etc.—— May God Bless you and your family as you go through this trying time but remember all of the good times and happy memories.

    Sending you hugs and prayers. Marilyn Batkie

  20. Nancy & Kowalski says:

    My deepest sympathy to you & your family. I was saddened to hear of Lee’s passng. I a very glad nowtati went to the McLane Family Reunion last fall& had one last chance to see & talk to Lee.
    You & your family will be in my thoughts & my prayers.

  21. Bill and Carolyn Wallschlaeger says:

    Sylvia, We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoutghts and prayers are with you and your family.

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