OBITUARY

Leon L. Czikowsky

October 23, 1956January 8, 2019

Lyme - Leon Lawton Czikowsky, 62, of Lyme, died Tuesday, January 8, 2019 at Yale New Haven Hospital after a courageous battle with cancer. His positive attitude in confronting this disease was inspirational.

Leon was born on October 23, 1956 in New York City, the son of Leon and Dorothy (Dwyer) Czikowsky.

He graduated from Lyme-Old Lyme High School in 1974. He later graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania receiving a bachelor’s in economics and finance, and went on to get a master’s in urban studies from Southern Connecticut State University, and a master’s in city and regional planning from the University of Pennsylvania. He received an advanced certificate in screenwriting from the University of California.

For most of his career, Leon was a research analyst at the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He was a former legislative liaison and acting press secretary for the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, and a former columnist for "Today's the Day Harrisburg." Proud to have once lived in Bowling Green Kentucky, Leon was a colonel in the Honorary Order of Kentucky Colonels.

Dorothy Czikowsky of Lyme, Leon’s loving mother, survives him, and his father Leon Czikowsky predeceased him in 1990.

Born in New York City, he had visited nearly every New York City museum and tourist attraction, and did much of the same on his many trips to California, including attending numerous book signings. People were fond of Leon for his amazing wit and sense of humor, along with his incredible wisdom and strength of character. He lived his life to its fullest through his work as a dedicated public servant, his writing, and spending time with his mother, friends and colleagues. Leon had a positive impact on everyone whose life he touched, and his legacy will live on in all those who were fortunate to have known him. Leon Czikowsky will be greatly missed.

Dorothy Czikowsky would like to thank the staff at Bride Brook Health and Rehabilitation Center in Niantic, Connecticut and Yale New Haven Hospital in New Haven, Connecticut for their care and compassion shown to Leon during his illness.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 26, 2019 at 11:00 am at Fulton-Theroux Funeral Home, 13 Beckwith Lane, Old Lyme, Connecticut. Memorial donations may be made to: The American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22478, Oklahoma City, OK 73123 or online at www.cancer.org.

Please visit www.fultontherouxoldlyme.com for tributes and directions.

Services

  • Memorial Service Saturday, January 26, 2019
REMEMBERING

Leon L. Czikowsky

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Shaun Sisk

January 26, 2019

Leon was one of the most decent people I've ever met. Polite -- almost to a fault -- there was no one else like him. His shy demeanor gave way to a writing style that was both enthusiastic and educated as well as fantastical and absurd.

We lost touch after high school, but picked up our friendship in 2002. After several years of fairly constant contact we lost touch again until this past November. About 15 years ago Leon revealed to me that he'd received the "Perfect Attendance" Award at OLHS for never missing one day of school during the entire four years. (He also told me that he only missed one day of work in his 27-year political career and it was due to the flu.) That someone in this robust health should get cancer is beyond unfair. But besides that....this leaves me wondering....what did Leon do on "Senior Skip Day?"

Oh -- I have so many other questions for him too! We'd only just renewed our friendship and I didn't know that he was as sick as he was. I guess I'll ask him the next time we meet again. Fly high my friend! Rest in Peace Leon.

Jennifer Stahl

January 24, 2019

With gratitude it is a pleasure to remember this true friend. Leon's wonderful powerful smile shall never be forgotten. He lives in so many hearts that he has touched by his sincerity. This world has been made brighter by this beautiful soul. Till we meet again,..enjoy the view dear one.

Erika Brunelle

January 24, 2019

Leon, you are one of Pennsylvania’s finest.

Rest In Peace, friend. Thank you for all you taught me and all the “useless knowledge” you imparted. Thank you for always elevating what was right, even before it was popular. Thank you for feeding me. Thank you for giving me meaningful assignments, even as an unpaid intern. Thank you for your loving effort to help me kick my cig habit. I WILL kick it. When I do, I’ll credit you (and that awful Keith Richards pic you posted in my first ever cubicle). More than anything, I’ll miss your endless optimism...and your chuckle.

I promise to keep up the good fight. And I’ll think of you when we achieve the sweetest victories.

With love and gratitude,
intern #42

Michael Cassidy

January 19, 2019

All the former legislative staff of fmr State Representative (now Judge) Mark B. Cohen mourn the loss of Leon Czikowsky. He was an always friendly champion of labor rights and making drug treatment available for all who need it. Despite the stresses of political and legislative conflict, I don't believe I ever saw him angry -- remarkable in our business.

Craig Reed

January 16, 2019

Leon is a new old friend, we meet at the Hollywood Show in California about 2-3 years ago. Kevin Flatley was his traveling buddy when they came out to the show almost every three months they would stop by and talk to all the actors and venders there checking out autograph pictures and memorabilia for sale, they would always stop by my table and visit throughout the show and they both became good friends to me and our group of people also involved with the show. Leon and Kevin would always be invited to our group’s dinners after the show. Leon as well as Kevin have a great sense of humor and both could talk on any subject and are just good people that you feel as though you have known them forever.
Not until Leon’s untimely passing did I discover his amazing life journey but I always new by his insight and humor that he had a well grounded background and loved life, Family, friends, travel and was always interested in new things to do and see.
I will miss seeing Leon at the shows but he is a person you don’t forget and I am proud to have known him.
God Bless Leon on his journey home and comfort to his family and friends.

Rodney Spicher

January 14, 2019

I always looked forward to having lunch with Leon, picking him up at the state capital building travailing to the many Chinese Buffets in the area. We had many conversations and he always talked fondly of his mother and Lyme. I was very sorry to hear of his passing but was lucky enough called him my friend. My condolences to the family.

Cindie Watkins

January 14, 2019

As a coworker who soon became a good friend, Leon taught me more about research than I could learn in any classroom. He was my "private professor." Any time I got "stuck" on something or came to an impasse, I could email Leon at any time, and he was always there to help in his gracious, gentlemanly, humorous manner. And he was my "once a month, life after the legislature" lunch buddy. There was no one like him, and I am a much richer person for having the good fortune of our paths crossing in this life. Rest in peace, dear one.

Christopher Atwood

January 13, 2019

I was glad to become reacquainted with Leon (through Facebook) after many, many years. He showed strength in his illness. I think of him as in the clouds, purple and orange at sunset, red sky at morning (sailors take warning!), making flowers grow with summer rain, illuminating the entities moving in the woods in the dark by strokes of lightning with claps of thunder as the soundtrack, defining the ice on streams, ponds, lakes, and rivers with snow. Oh, Leon. Goodbye.

Michael Edmiston

January 12, 2019

For 22 years I worked for the PA House of Representatives Democratic Caucus, many of those years with Leon. His compassion and intellect ennobled discourse and disposition of every public policy issue that came before him. His steady and positive outlook and commentary refined our analyses of even the most controversial issues with a uniquely vital reason and logic. The example of his commitment and integrity assured our common efforts would summon our best. Sometimes in our work lives we get lucky; with our colleague Leon we won the lottery.

Priscilla Hallman

January 12, 2019

My first recollection of you was in our high school French class. We recently reminisced about how we remembered our proximity to one another in class, you to my left and back approximately ½ desk, and you and I speaking more in English than French. Although a year ahead in school, dare I spoke to an upperclassman (!), our paths crossed with other activities, most notably the plays and your junior prom. Following graduation we moved without the benefit of cell phones and Facebook but managed to connect periodically. Moving back to CT in 2000 I was able to connect with you more. I always enjoyed your stories (you traveled so much!), your wit, and that brilliant mind. Being with you was a gift. You focused on the person you were with, living in the present wanting to hear what was happening in their life. Literally days before your passing you continued to try to recover. I will miss you, Leon. I don’t think the gravity of that has yet hit. When I will visit with your mother and not have you there it will hit. As it will when I no longer read a Facebook post from you or hear your voice. Thank you for being you…your kindness, compassion, strength of character, love of family and friends. Even with your passing you have reunited so many LOLHS graduates and others. Priscilla White Hallman

FROM THE FAMILY