Leo George Pullar, 89, of Hoyt Lakes, died, surrounded by loving family, on Friday, Sept. 13, 2019, at the Essentia Health-Northern Pines Nursing Home in Aurora. He was born Dec. 22, 1929 at home in Koochiching Township, MN to Ervin and Dorothy (Hunstable) Pullar.  Leo was married to Merna Smeland on Sept. 6, 1952.

At 17, Leo joined the Army.  He served as a Military Policeman in Washington D.C.  He was very proud to have served as one of “Truman’s Boys”. After working numerous jobs, he got a job with Erie Mining Company, where he retired after 36 years as a locomotive engineer.  He really loved his job, even though it was shift work and 10 hour plus days.

While living in Embarrass, he was elected Township Supervisor.  He was instrumental in starting the volunteer fire department (which he was a part of) and in building the Embarrass Town Hall. After moving to Hoyt Lakes in 1966, he ran a small engine shop in his free time. He fixed many lawn mowers and snowblowers for the community. He could fix anything.

He was a Past Master, Hiram Award winner, and a 50 year member of the Biwabik Masonic Lodge #293. He was a Past Patron and 50 year member of the Order of Eastern Star Chapter #262 in Biwabik. Also, he was a member of the Trinity United Methodist Church.

To know Leo, was to love Leo! He was a man of great integrity. He loved everyone and would help anyone in need. He loved to visit, tell stories, and jokes even with total strangers.  Merna was always waiting for him, because he would be talking with someone.  He loved to fish, hunt, and travel, especially in the old school buses that he transformed into campers. 

He is survived by his wife, Merna; son, Chris (Tammy) of Hoyt Lakes,  daughters, Julie (Stephen Vanderburg) Johnson of Barnes, WI and Patricia (Richard) VonderHaar of Sauk Rapids, MN and son, Steven (Karin) of Shafer, MN; grandchildren, Angela, April, Richard, Jennifer, Theresa, Matthew and Amy Jo; 11 great-grandchildren; 1 great-great-granddaughter; sisters, Jacquelyn (Floyd) Christianson, Doreen (Gordon) MacMurray, Judith (Herb) Fuller, Cathie Eldridge all of International Falls and Karen Tupper of Fort Frances, Ontario, Canada and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; sisters, Etta Jean, Dorothy (Elaine), Marguerite (Peggy), Nancy; brothers, James, Jerry, Patrick and Michael.


Memorial service will be 12:00 noon, Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019 at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Hoyt Lakes with Pastor Barbara Hegfors officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church with a Masonic Service being held at 11:45 a.m. Military honors will be accorded by the Aurora-Hoyt Lakes Color Guard. Arrangements are by the Ziemer-Moeglein-Shatava Funeral Home in Aurora. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred for the Trinity United Methodist Church.


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