Obituary of Leo Seide
The communities of Flint, Michigan, and Charlotte, North Carolina, sadly lost a pillar on Saturday,
January 30, 2021, when Mr. Leo Seide passed away at age 95. Leo was born to Fanny (Mendes) and
Barnett Seide on September 24, 1925, in Flint, Michigan, and graduated from Northern High School. For
over 43 years, he was President of Seide Distributing Company and Auto City Distributing Company.
During that time, he sponsored hundreds of athletic teams and sporting events throughout
mid-Michigan. He was also known as the “Godfather of Golf” as a result of successfully bringing the PGA
Tour’s Buick Open (originally Carling Open) to Genesee County. Following his chapter in the distributing
business, Leo began his second career as Senior Vice President of the Cooper Commercial Group, selling
commercial real estate for 26 years. Leo finally retired at the age of 91!
Leo was a World War II veteran, serving with the 88 th Infantry Division from 1943-1946. He was a
VFW/Genesee Lodge 174 life member and a volunteer for the war veterans at Avalon Hospice. As a
volunteer, Leo championed the Flint community in many ways, and was thus an honoree of the 2009
Donald Riegle Community Service Award. He sat for eight years on the Flint Board of Education. He was
a dynamic member of the Board of the 100 Club of Flint and of the Flint Jewish Federation Board of
Directors, and a co-chair of the United Jewish Appeal Campaign. He was a proud congregant of Temple
Beth El and Congregation Beth Israel in Flint, Michigan, and a member of Temple Beth El in Charlotte,
Leo was appointed to the Michigan State Fair Authority twice, by two separate Governors. He acted as
President of the Beer and Wine Association of Michigan and also represented the National Beer
Wholesalers Association of America before Congress. The myriad community associations and boards on
which he served also included the American Cancer Society, Genesee County Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Commission, Flint Golf Club, Genesee Bank Board of Directors, Genesee County Tax Allocution, and Elf Khurafeh Shrine.
Leo is survived by his beloved wife and best friend of 65 years, Charna “Chickie” Seide, and their three
loving children, Bennye Seide (Jeff Brown), David Seide (Heather), and Marcy Handlan (Kohl). He was the
proud grandfather of Mallory Miller (Kevin) and Hunter Seide, and the sweet great-grandfather of Kevin
and McClain Miller. Leo is also survived by one sister, Helen Shuster (George) and several beloved
nieces, nephews and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, one brother, Sol Seide (Nettie),
and three sisters, Mary Goldberg (Herman), Jeanne Luke (Robert), and Esther Velick (Harold).
Leo treasured his family and embraced every moment with them. He especially loved his role as Papa.
He had a charismatic personality and always made those around him feel warm and respected. His
legacy will live on in the hearts and minds of everyone with whom he interacted. He will be deeply
missed by his family, friends, and community. A celebratory memorial service will take place in Flint,
Michigan, during summer 2021. The date is yet to be determined.
Memorial donations may be made to:
Flint Jewish Federation 5080 W. Bristol Street, Ste. 3, Flint, MI 48507
The Hundred Club of Genesee, Shiawassee and Lapeer Counties
Attn: Christina Irwin firstname.lastname@example.org
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