Leo Thomas McCartney, 67, passed away on November 24 at his childhood home after bravely battling Glioblastoma for 21 months. Just a year after restoring his childhood home, Leo learned that he had 9-12 months to live and was told by multiple doctors that, “It’s going to be a long, hard road.” Leo responded to his wife and daughters with, “Well, at least it’s me and none of you.” That is just the type of man he was. Our beloved Leo entered this world on August 18, 1953. Born to Alvera (Lawhead), a homemaker, and John McCartney, an insurance salesman and deputy sheriff, Leo grew up in Ridgway. He was the youngest of three siblings. His sisters Gina Renaud and Kathy Williamson were always quick to say, “Big boys sit in the middle.” Growing up, he played baseball, but his real love was spending time outdoors, especially hunting, fishing, and working on cars. Leo was also an artist who enjoyed drawing pictures for loved ones. Surprisingly, he even had penmanship out of the 17th Century. At his high school senior banquet, Leo hit it off with classmate, Laura (Anderson), who was drawn to his kind heart, infectious laugh, and close-knit family. Shortly after Laura finished nursing school, the soulmates married on October 5, 1974. In addition to being an avid hunter, Leo was a competitive silhouette shooter - a two-time PA state champion. His competitive years ended in 1980 when the couple started a family, welcoming twin girls. After building their own close-knit family, and with their girls out of the house, the couple found a passion on Lake Pymatuning. Days were spent on their boat fishing and ended at their camper, surrounded by friends, sharing fishing stories and food around a campfire at night. A problem solver by nature, Leo could build and fix anything. He was also one who would always lend a helping hand. Though he was retired, Leo spent 35 years working as a maintenance mechanic at Metaldyne, now American Axle & Manufacturing. Leo’s sister Kathy preceded him in death, along with his granddaughter Charlotte. One of the last things he said was a promise he made, “I’ll teach Charlotte to fish and play ball.” Leo is survived by: his devoted wife, Laura, and their daughters, Rayna Banks and Rena McCartney; Rayna’s husband, Tim Banks, and their two daughters, Fallyn and Iris; by his sister Gina; and by many nieces, nephews, and friends. Leo adored his family and was proud to share stories and updates with anyone who would listen. While Leo was on his “long-hard road,” he made it a point each day to reach for Laura’s hand and ask, “Laura, did I tell you I love you today?” So, in honor of Leo, hold your loved ones tight and let them know how you feel. No day is guaranteed. To watch a tribute of Leo’s life: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9snAsx2sy0&feature=youtu.be There will be a private visitation at Carlson-Shugarts Funeral Home, 1033 4th Ave., Brockway on Saturday, November 28, at 11aET. Face masks are required and we will practice social distancing. The service will be live streamed at 1:00 from the funeral home’s website - https://www.csfhinc.com In lieu of flowers, please make any memorial donations online to: Hahne Regional Cancer Center or Penn Highlands Hospice - https://www.phhealthcare.org/donate/donate-to-penn-highlands-dubois in honor of Leo McCartney.
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