Leo Petrik

Leo D. Petrik, son of Vaclav (Jim) and Pauline (Kocmick) Petrik, was born Nov.15, 1935, on the family farm east of Wagner, S.D.
Leo received his grade school education at the Choteau Creek Country School, graduating from the eighth grade. He joined the South Dakota Army National Guard (SDNG) in December 1955 as a construction machine operator and served 21 years between the Wagner and Custer SDNG units.
Leo married the love of his life and best friend, Marcella Roth, Oct. 31, 1961. After their marriage, Leo and Marcella ranched south of Dante, S.D. Four children were born to their union: Marcia, Margaret, Mathew (Mike) and Larry. 
In 1968 they moved to Custer, S.D.  Leo worked on the crew installing the stairs and elevators in Jewel Cave National Monument.  In this job, he developed the love of spelunking in the Black Hills. Leo loved the Black Hills, so instead of staying with the company and moving his family to Texas, he obtained work in the logging and mining industry. He worked at Four Mile Post & Pole, the Custer (V&R) sawmill, the Newberg sawmill and Pacer.
In 1988, Leo and Marcella moved to Wagner, where he farmed and worked at the Good Samaritan Nursing Home until his retirement. In December 2016, Leo and Marcella returned to Custer. Leo moved to Custer Regional Senior Care in September 2017, joining his wife there. Leo and Marcella were married over 56 years before Marcella’s death in February 2018.
Leo will be remembered for his love of his family, his wonderful smile and the twinkle in his eyes. He loved the outdoors, hunting, fishing, horses, cattle, dogs and animals in general. He also enjoyed taking his wife dancing, and their favorite song was “You’re My Best Friend” by Don Williams. He enjoyed spending time with his wife, children and grandchildren, playing cards with friends, watching old Westerns and trips on horseback to the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming, along with many other adventures.
Leo was a member of the Post 11 Wagner American Legion.
Leo died Sept. 2, 2020, at the Monument Health Custer Care Center. He was 84 years and 10 months old.
He was preceded in death by his wife; parents; brother, Robert J. Petrik; and sister-in-law, Anna (Cihak) Petrik.
Thankful for having shared his life are his children, Marcia (Jeff) Hento of Custer, Margaret (Troy) Carling of Piedmont, S.D., Mathew “Mike” (Mellissa) Petrik of Avon, S.D., and Larry (Kay) Petrik of Mitchell, S.D.; 13 grandchildren; 28 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild; and many cousins, nieces and nephews.
 Funeral services are at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 8, at Assumption Catholic Church in Dante. Burial is in St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, rural Dante with military honors.

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