GRAND ISLAND — Services for Dr. Leona K. Janda 58, Grand Island, will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, July 16, at All Faiths Funeral Home, 2929 S. Locust St., in Grand Island. Private graveside prayers will be prior to the service at Westlawn Memorial Park Cemetery. The Rev. Don Buhrman and Dan Naranjo will officiate.
Dr. Leona Katherine Janda passed away in peace with family by her side on Saturday, June 25, 2022.
Leona was born on Oct. 7, 1963, to Edward L. and Clara R. (Skalka) in Hastings. Along with her parents, she was welcomed to the world by a brother and three sisters. She grew up on a farm near Lawrence, learning the ways of raising sheep, turkeys, dairy and beef cattle. While still in elementary school, she moved with the family to Grand Island. Her parents established the Janda Tire Center, and as she went through her teenage years, she took on more responsibilities in the business.
Leona attended Jefferson Grade School, Walnut Middle School and was a member of the class of 1981 at Grand Island Senior High School. Leona excelled both academically and athletically. She participated in volleyball, basketball, softball and track. She then attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and participated in the rowing program for a period.
Her greatest accomplishment was graduating with a doctor of dental surgery degree in 1988. She was among Grand Island’s first female dentists when she joined the dental practice of her brother. Together, they formed Dental Health Care — Drs. Janda and Janda. In 2013, she left dentistry because of a chronic illness, but she had practiced dentistry for over 25 years in Grand Island. She was a member of the American Dental Association and Hall County Dental Association.
Leona was a past member of St. Mary’s Cathedral and served as an assistant RCIA instructor, Eucharistic minister and lectorate, as well as participating in a number of committees. She also was a proponent of physical conditioning and good nutrition. She especially enjoyed traveling, hiking and photography. She could always be counted on to encourage her nieces and nephews in their school events. She was a friend to many and kind to all.
Dr. Leona’s memory is cherished by her brother, Dr. David E. (Carol) Janda of Grand Island; sisters Mary (Jerry) Shelton of Beatrice, Linda (Dan) Goodman of Norfolk and Alice (Dr. Norm) Grosbach of Gilbert, Ariz.; and life companion, Gary Eilenstine of Grand Island. Her family also included a niece and nephews, Gary’s children and grandchildren, cousins and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Edward and Clara Janda; nephew Scott Goodman; and infant triplet nephews.
Memorials are suggested to the Grace Foundation or the Grand Island Public Library Foundation in lieu of flowers.
“… and let it not be said, ‘she lost her battle to cancer.’ For any battle fought with courage, dignity and grace is never lost, but serves as a lesson in humility and is an inspiration to all. It reminds us to live our own life to the fullest.” — Erin Coriell