Laurie Leipzig Wiersma went to be with the angels in the early morning of Nov. 12, 2020, at St. Mary’s Hospital, Grand Rapids, MI. Laurie (or Laura, or Larue, depending on when you first met her) was born in Chicago, IL on Jan. 9, 1958 to Robert (Bob) & Loretta Leipzig.
Laurie had many passions, and one of her greatest was theater. She was involved with (in no particular order): Theater on the Lake, Pentangle Productions, Tempo Players, Chicago Park District, Music on Stage, and more. She performed in “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum”, “Music Man”, “South Pacific”, “Fiddler on the Roof” and many more than could ever fit in this space. So many true stories could be told, but one of the more memorable ones involved a papier-mache bust for the role of a wife, so the props people made one of Laurie. She kept it on a column in her dining room for years. She also displayed an enormous knight, in full armor, in her apartment.
Laurie was always the person who brought other people together. Laurie and friends spent many hours at places such as The Golden Flame, or Laschets, drinking coffee after rehearsals or just getting together. For years, they played cards at the Leipzig house every Saturday night until 5:00 AM. One year there was a giant freeze where mom & dad Leipzig let everybody stay at their house for 3 days because of the horrible snowstorm.
Laurie worked for years at air freight companies at O’Hare airport (ORD), and that’s how she met her husband, Ken, who worked in air freight in Grand Rapids, MI (GRR). They talked to each other at work, then outside of work, then drove back & forth between GRR & ORD. After 18 months or so of this, Laurie married Ken, & they didn’t have to drive to Chicago every weekend. In Grand Rapids (Belmont), MI, Laurie operated an at-home business called Lotions & Potions, mixing custom hand, face, & body lotions. She set up an online card game league called TMM where friends got together to play canasta, pinochle, and other games. She also worked as a “Scentsy” consultant, marketing scented candle-type warmers and waxes.
Laurie was a friend to everyone and was always ready to give anything she had, and even after her passing, her eyes were donated so that another person could see the world through Laurie’s eyes. She is survived by her loving husband, Ken, brother Robert (Bob) Leipzig, and in-laws Bernie & Minnie, and Donna Wiersma, and Deidre (Dee) Leipzig and also by so many friends who were like family to Laurie.
A memorial service is being planned for the Chicago area in spring. Those wishing to make donations may do so to their favorite charity or organization, in Laurie’s name.
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