Leon Herschel Herman of San Miguel, Calif., passed away on the 18th of January 2019 at the age of 90.
Leon was born in Hollywood, Calif., and attended grammar school in Tarzana, Calif. He attended Ridgewood Military Academy for several years and graduated from Canoga Park High School. Following high school, Leon attended Cal Poly at San Luis Obispo, during which time he, along with three others, founded the “Throttle Merchants” while racing roadsters at Saugus Raceway. Also while attending Cal Poly, he enlisted in the US Air Force Reserves and was called up in November 1951. He was in charge of the crash ambulances for the flight line and base and was honorably discharged with the rank of Sergeant in 1952. Leon then received his welding certificate and obtained a job with Lockheed Aircraft. In 1954, he then went to work for North American Aviation in the Rocketdyne Division doing structure and missile hardware welding. Leon married Joyce Ann Munsch and in 1959, Leon and Joyce moved from Chatsworth, Calif., to San Miguel. After refurbishing an old ranch house into a home for his family and building an aircraft hangar, Leon obtained his private pilot’s license, FAA Mechanics license and IA (Inspection Authorization) license. He operated an aircraft salvage and repair business for the next 50 years.
One of Leon’s many hobbies was as a ham radio operator. He made many friends throughout the country while on the radio. He also served on the Soil Conservation District and the Pleasant Valley/Estrella Cemetery District.
Leon was a voracious reader who retained everything and was knowledgeable about many and various subjects. He was a master welder and could fabricate or repair anything anyone asked of him. He was the “go-to-guy” and will be sorely missed by many.
Leon is survived by his wife of 61 years, Joyce Herman, son, Ron Herman, daughter, Susan Velasquez, son-in-law, Robert Velasquez, grandson, Michael Velasquez, granddaughter, Sophia Velasquez, brother, Ralph Herman Sr., sister, Rosalie Bier, nephews, Ralph Jr., Stuart and Huston and three great-nephews. A private burial will take place. Donations may be made in Leon’s name to the American Legion Post 50 — Paso Robles or to Parkinson’s Research.