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Dennis Stephen Leavitt, 81, passed away June 30, 2014.

He was born Nov. 29, 1932.

Dennis was raised in the metro area, primarily Stillwater, Minn., as oldest son of 10 children. Dennis enjoyed spending summers on Balsam Lake, Wis., winters in Sun Lakes Ariz., and year-round on the St. Croix River. Avid runner, biker, swimmer, witty joke teller and poet. Worked for NW Bell Telephone in Duluth, for 32 years and retired as District Manager in 1984. President and COO of Universal Telephone in Milwaukee, Wis., 1984-1989. In addition to the telephone industry, Dennis was active in numerous civic affairs where he served as President or Chairman of Junior Achievement, United Way Fund Drive, Duluth Cultural Center Fund Drive, United Negro College Fund, Black Legal Defense Fund, Northern MN Development Assn., Duluth Government Efficiency Study Program, National Alliance of Businessmen, and Amateur Boxing Assn. Other board and fundraising for Duluth Chamber of Commerce, YMCA, UMD Graduate School, and Duluth Cathedral High School/Marshall. Dennis started the Grandma's Marathon in the '70's with his running buddies The Northshore Striders. He received personal commendation for his civic duties by Richard Nixon, Wendell Anderson, Hubert Humphrey and Jim Oberstar.

Dennis married his high school sweetheart Mary Jo Lescarbeau in 1951, until her death in 1992. They raised four children: Beth (Mike) Ellwein (deceased-2010); Dan (Patty) Leavitt; Jeff (Colleen) Leavitt; Catherine (Jim) Olson; grandchildren: Andy; Miranda, Joe, Lydia; Aaron, Corey; Celia, Louis; and five great-grandchildren. Also survived by "best friend" Jeanne Thoreson and childhood buddy Jean "Beans" Lehmicke whom he visited daily.

CELEBRATION OF LIFE: 3 p.m. Tuesday, July 8, in Bradshaw 2800 Curve Crest Blvd., Stillwater, Minn. Visitation one hour prior to the service. Memorials are preferred to St. Croix Valley Alano Society.