With a sad and heavy heart we advise that Brother Leonard Loza passed away Sunday, April 26, 2020 at the age of 72.
Greg Loza (son) advised that his dad, our brother, passed away peacefully and will be missed by his family and many friends. Len’s family will be having a grave side service for him. Unfortunately due to the current coronavirus situation and accompanying regulations there will not be many people allowed to attend. The family plans to have a memorial service at the Holy Trinity Church once the social distancing situation is over. R.I.P. Brother Leonard. We miss you so much, each and every day . . .
Kevin Clark, Directing Business Representative IAMDL14 (IAMLL0099)
I first met Len Loza when I came to Alberta back in 2000 after transferring from British Columbia. I was introduced to Len and soon realized that the “Mountain Men” couldn’t hold a candle to the “Prairie Boys”. Len and I took many road trips for the Union visiting outlying locations where our members worked and Len schooled me the entire time on all types of farm implements that were laying in fields along our routes. Len was a great Unionist. He served many years as a Steward, Executive Member and 2 terms as Local Lodge 99’s Secretary Treasurer, along with being a Strike Captain in 2005. He was the first to volunteer if a hand was needed and gave countless hours of his time for political action in the riding he lived in. Len left us all too soon, but his actions and memory will live on for a very long time.
Matthew Barnable, Business Representative IAMDL14 (IAMLL0099)
Brother Leonard Loza was an outspoken unionist who stood up for his beliefs. He remained an activist even after he put his tools down in retirement. Unforgettable was Leonard’s vocal support of a group of workers the IAM was trying to unionize. The passion in which he encouraged our members to support these folks who needed us was incredible. I enjoyed our chats when he visited the union office and will miss them immensely. Leonard’s spirit will live on through those who knew him and we must endeavour to pass on his zest for union activism to inspire others, as Leonard did for us.
Glenn Killips, President IAMAW Retirees Association of Alberta (IAMLL1722)
I met Len Loza around May 1, 1992 when Local Lodge 99 joined the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, District Lodge 14. Since that time he became a leader in his Local and the District, as well as a friend. After retirement, he wanted to start a retiree group for District Lodge 14. He convinced me to come to a meeting. We elected an Executive Board, started to have regular meetings and coffee meetings monthly. Len also had the camping and fishing trips coordinated for the rest of us to attend. It is with great sadness to hear of Len’s passing. I will miss my friend.
Neil Rudiger, IAMAW Retirees Association of Alberta (IAMLL 0099)
Dan Uchacz, IAMAW Retirees Association of Alberta (IAMLL1722)
Leonard John Loza, Len as he was known to his friends, was born in Bonnyville, Alberta on the 19th of March, 1948. The youngest boy of the family, he went to school in the Bonnyville area and upon graduation he moved to the Edmonton area and started work at R. Angus Alberta Limited as a first year apprentice. Being raised on a farm gave Len a strong work ethic, which he maintained through-out his career. After becoming a Journeyman Mechanic Len transferred to Bonnyville as a Resident Mechanic for the area This is where he was able to build many strong personal relationships with the local customers, a trait that served him well over the years. After four years he returned to Edmonton where he worked in the shop as a mechanic until 1989 when the company became Finning Limited. He stayed as a mechanic at Finning until his retirement in March, 2013, ending a 44 year career.
Early in his career Len started becoming involved in Union activities. First he became a Shop Steward, then a Chief Shop Steward eventually moving on to wearing many hats from Secretary Treasurer, Recording Secretary, to Vice President of Local Lodge 99. Len also sat on many Negotiation Committees on behalf of his fellow members. Len took advantage of the training provided at Placid Harbor. On his last trip, after retirement, he successfully took on the challenge of organizing an IAM Retiree’s Association where he held the position of Recording Secretary until his sudden illness on July 1st long weekend of 2019.
Len was ALWAYS a political activist and was strongly involved with the NDP where he attended many rallies and protests, with healthcare being one of his most ardent issues. Many an evening was spent discussing the issues at hand over a v-water and Clamato juice while sitting around a fire.
Len was long known for his many idioms, one of which was after pointing his crooked finger (that was injured at work) and scolding his subject with “Don’t be so stupid, it doesn’t suit you.” or “Dinner is at noon.” or “Supper is the evening meal and we know this because Jesus had a last supper, not a last dinner.” or “A cap is a cap, NOT a hat”. He had many of these, which he was always able to launch into at a moment’s notice and anyone that knew him well has undoubtedly heard them all.
Len also loved the great outdoors, fishing in particular. One of his favourite spots being Canyon Creek on Lesser Slave Lake, where he was with the Retirees Association group on his last trip. He had that secret “spot” on the lake that he was always glad to share with all. No one could clean a fish better or quicker.
His quick wit and vast knowledge will be sorely missed by the Union, the political movement and by all that knew him. Leonard was one of a kind with a big heart and a willing hand to help anyone in need.
The best way to sum up Leonard’s career would be to say WELL DONE, BROTHER! WELL DONE! R.I.P. BROTHER LEN.