Obituary of Leba Wadih Sarkis
Dr. Leba Wadih Sarkis, 71 years of age, passed away Monday, October 3rd, 2022, in Greeley, Colorado. He was born on July 29th, 1951, to Wadih Sarkis and Marie Sawma in Togo, West Africa.
Leba grew up in Lebanon and attended boarding school at the College des Freres. In his younger days he had many fond memories of living with his Grandma in Hasroun, Lebanon. The rose of the mountains. Near the cedars of God and the Valley of the Saints this serene mountain town is a beautiful reflection of God’s glory, and the history of early Christianity. He was so proud of his heritage and being from the land where Jesus walked and taught. After graduating high school Leba decided to pursue an education in the United States. He studied at several universities including Huntington College, Purdue University, California State University Northridge, and ultimately graduated with a Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Northern Colorado.
He went on to become a professor and taught at Aims Community College. He was loved so dearly by his students and received all the college’s highest awards and accolades such as Faculty Member of the year several times over. Many of these honors were especially precious to him because they were voted by the student body. He loved to teach and had a true passion in helping students succeed. He would always work with each and every individual student to provide any extra help needed for their success in his classes. He retired and was awarded the honor of being instated as Professor Emeritus at Aims Community College.
In 1983 Leba became a father to his daughter Diana Sarkis. He was the most dedicated, devoted loving father a girl could ever have. He raised Diana to know true unselfish love and taught her about their Maronite Catholic faith. He took her to Lebanon and showed her their culture, and the importance of family. When she moved to Denver for college, he drove every single weekend to bring her home, or later after she had a family to visit her family every weekend. Never letting her want for anything in life, and always providing love and support.
In August 2003 Leba married Marie Amouni his loving wife. He was a loving, and kindly devoted husband. They shared beautiful years together and created so many memories. They enjoyed spending the summers in their house in Hasroun were they would always entertain so many friends and family. They also delighted in hosting special parties for Marie’s colleagues at their home in Greeley. They enjoyed travelling, and went to places like London, Paris, Greece, and within the US together.
Anyone that knows Leba also knows that he had a passion for antiques and collectables. He loved to hunt for treasures from years past by going to places like the Mile High Flea Market, and all sorts of antique stores. He collected toys and cars that reminded him of his childhood, cameras and radios, and watches that showed the beauty of technological advances over the years. He had so much appreciation for history and enjoyed studying about memorabilia from years of old. Leba also loved spending time with family. He had a very special relationship with his grandchildren. He was so proud of how sweet and smart his princess Chloe was becoming. He and Hudson had a very special bond, they used to tell each other “secrets” that will never be forgotten, and from a very young age Hudson always clung to his Grandpa.
The last few months were very hard battling cancer, but Leba fought courageously and endured so much. Never complaining and was always steadfast in his faith and hope in Christ. He was a light in the lives of all he met and was kind and loving to all. He has left a void that will never be filled in the hearts of all who knew and loved him.
Mother Angelica wrote “One of the reasons Heaven is so hard for us to understand is that, in Heaven, we will be loved by everyone in a total unselfishness. Can you imagine being in a place or a family today where every member really and truly loved each other? If you do, then you live in Heaven here.” To know Leba, and to have experienced his love, was truly to have a glimpse of Heaven and what is to come for all who believe. We were the most blessed family to have him in our lives and will thank God for that blessing every day.
Leba is survived by his loving wife Marie Sarkis of Greeley, CO, his daughter Diana Youssef and her husband Jimmy of Highlands Ranch, CO, his siblings; Antoine Sarkis and his wife Souraya Sarkis of San Antonio, TX, Charbel Sarkis and his wife Gladys Sarkis of Hasroun Lebanon, and Rebecca Sarkis of Hasroun Lebanon, his grandchildren; Chloe Sophia Youssef and Hudson James Youssef of Highlands Ranch, CO.
He is preceded in death by his parents Wadih Sarkis and Marie Sawma, and his sister Salam Sarkis.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 2301 Wadsworth Blvd, Lakewood CO 80214 on Sunday, October 16th, 2022, at 11:00 am, with lunch to follow.