Leon Friend Hadley passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on April 6, 2023. He was born near Alma, Nebraska on November 1, 1925, the second child of thirteen to Friend (Mike) Valentine Hadley and Agusta Louise. He spent the early years of his life helping out on the family farm. Later he attained his GED, briefly served in the army, and attended Milford trade school to become a carpenter.\n\nHe met Susian Miriam Eastman in church when he spotted her in a near-by pew kicking her feet and popping her chewing gum. It was love at first sight. They had dreams of building a life together but Susian’s parents were very strict. She began hiding pieces of extra clothing under her puffy coat to put in the trunk of Leon’s car. Susian forgot to sneak in a pair of sensible shoes so Leon bought them for her as a wedding gift. After a brief courtship, they eloped on April 23,1946 and were together for just shy of 76 years. In the last months of his life Leon moved into\nSusian’s retirement home and they would enjoy dinners and dates at the ice cream parlor with their little pup Coco.\n\nOne could certainly say that Lincoln would not be the same without Leon’s dedicated work as a builder, carpenter, and craftsman. Indeed, it would be hard to drive through the city without passing one of the hundreds of family homes or commercial buildings Leon built or remodeled throughout his career. His legacy lives on in the structures that provide homes, spaces of worship, and places of business for hundreds of Lincolnites.\n\nIf you knew Leon, you’d know that he loved his fiddles. His passion for music could be seen in the many instruments he collected, restored, and built. If you visited with him long enough it was almost certain that a fiddle would appear, and you would be graced with the sweet melody of Red River Valley, Turkey In the Straw, or any of a number of old country standards. He and Susian played old time fiddler’s music in many retirement homes, music halls, and events in Lincoln and surrounding areas with several bands, the most recent being The Grandpas and\nGrandmas.\n\nLeon is survived by his wife Susian Hadley; his siblings John Hadley (spouse Linda), Joan Kruschke (spouse Lee), and Jean Patterson; his children Judy Seeger (spouse Dr. Anthony “Tony” Seeger), Leon “Mick” Hadley (spouse Vicky Hadley), and Ronald “Ron” Hadley; his grandchildren Laurel Holdegraver (spouse Bryan Holdegraver), Stacy Hawthorne (spouse Chad Hawthorne); Matthew “Matt” Hadley (spouse Chris Durler), and Zachary “Zach” Hadley; his great grandchildren Sydney Holdegraver, Linden Hawthorne, Lyla Hadley, and Sylvie Hadley; and his many nieces and nephews.\n\nLeon is greatly loved and will be missed by many family and friends.\n\nA memorial service has been scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday, April 15, 2023, at Antelope Park Church, 3645 Sumner Street Lincoln, NE.