Leslie Warren Tollefson

January 1925 - May 2020

Leslie Warren Tollefson Born January 1925 in Cedar Falls Iowa to Albert T. Tollefson and Johanna M. Lundy, both from Illinois.  He is survived by 2 of his 6 siblings, Alberta and Helen.

In 1943 Les made his way to California where he ended up working for Douglas Aircraft in Santa Monica honing his skills in tool and die work. At a young age Les partnered and started a business contracting with Lockheed to produce piece work doing the same.  Eventually, over the years in the casting/ metallurgy industry he became VP and partner of Tectron, Inc. in Culver City, CA for over 25 years. Tectron, Inc. contracted with Roar, JPL, Bell helicopter, Rocketdyne and Boeing producing castings using lost wax process castings.

Les, as he was known to friends and family, was married to Billie Jo (Wyatt) for 62 years (past 2012) and they had 4 daughters: Alexis Belinda (Giroux), Leah Damaris (Bernson), Kirsten Anne (Kessey) and Leslie Beth (McDonnell), 10 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren. Living in Southern CA the family were successful breeders of Arabian show horses breeding and showing US top Ten and Canadian Top 20 performance horses as well as produced a Cal-bred futurity halter champion.

Les’ greatest passions were the great outdoors hunting, fishing, boating and gardening. He was a Camellia breeder in the 50’s and had a hot house of orchids. In the early 1970s Les and family bought property on the Merced river outside Hilmar, CA where he developed the land with pastures for horses, cattle and sheep and planted virtually every fruit and nut tree growable.  After retirement Les became a private pilot and he and wife barnstormed the US in his Cessna 182 and travelled in a trailer for months at a time. He later taught himself woodworking skills and tinkered with projects until the end. Post retirement Les became very active with Gideons International and ministered with the Rock Bottom Prison Ministries.

Les was proud of his Norwegian heritage and was one of the earlier board members of the Scandi-fest that took place downtown Main Street and the Turlock Fairgrounds Labor Day Weekend.


Remembrances

  1. Both Leon and I enjoyed visiting with Les ( and your mom) when they came back to Cedar Falls and when we were visiting in CA. He shared so much family history, including our Norwegian heritage. He was such a successful businessman and the whole family looked up to him.

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