MANSFIELD, Ohio:Leena Elisabeth Maki, died peacefully in her sleep on Wednesday, September 16, 2015, at her home in Mansfield, Ohio. She was born in Kuusankoski, Finland, on March 5, 1948. She was a nursery school teacher in Helsinki prior to marrying her husband, Pentti Maki, in Viitasaari, Finland, on June 6, 1981. After moving to the United States, Leena graduated with magna cum laude honors from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education.
As the wife of a pastor, she was actively involved in the congregations they served in Versailles, Ohio, Lake Worth, Florida, and Hicksville, Ohio. Most recently, as a member of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Mansfield, Ohio, she served as nursery coordinator, Sunday school teacher, member of the visitor outreach team, and as the mission interpreter for the congregation’s friendship congregations in Siberia.
Leena was a loving and caring wife, mother and grandmother whose wisdom and insight enriched family life. Her daughters, Anna and Sara had a special place in her heart. She was always an integral part of their lives. She was absolutely delighted with the birth of her granddaughter, Audrey, and had hoped to spend many years watching her grow and mature.
Leena greeted everyone with a warm, contagious smile and spread joy wherever she went. She was a blessing to those who knew her. She was an active and contributing member of the Finnish Heritage Museum in Fairport Harbor, OH.
Leena is survived by her husband of 34 years Pentti Maki; daughters, Anna and Sara Maki; and granddaughter, Audrey Miller. She is also survived by her family in Finland: parents, Raino and Sirkka-Liisa Westerholm; brother, Matti Westerholm; sister and brother-in-law, Ritva and Timo Erkama; brother, Pekka Westerholm and his fiancée Sanna Tamminen; former sister-in-law, Eija Westerholm; and nieces and nephews, Hanna Valtanen, Matti Erkama, Mari Erkama, Petteri Westerholm and Pauliina Karhulahti; aunt, Anneli Vayrynen; and numerous cousins. Leena is also survived by her sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Kaisa and William Gurish of Concord Township, Ohio and sister-in-law, Viola Pohto. Also included in the list of survivors are the family dog, Cali, and her grand-dogs, Kila and Luna.
Visitation will be at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 525 West Cook Road, Mansfield from 2:00-5:00 p.m. Sunday, September 20, 2015, and 10:00 a.m. until the 11:00 a.m. funeral service on Monday, September 21. Burial will be in Mansfield Cemetery. The Diamond Street Home of Wappner Funeral Directors is privileged to serve the family.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Siberian Friendship Congregations or Holy Trinity Lutheran Church.