Donald Kleier
In Memory of
Donald Francis Kleier
1926 - 2018
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Obituary for Donald Francis Kleier

Donald Francis Kleier, 91, WWII veteran, husband to the late Shirley Kleier, Louisville businessman, father of four, grandfather of four, great-grandfather of three, and friend to many passed away on Thursday, July 5, 2018 at the Episcopal Church Home. He was born in Louisville KY on September 12, 1926 to Catherine Elizabeth “Lil” Kleier and Bernard Robert “Benny” Kleier Sr. He was one of four brothers growing up in the Schnitzelburg area. During this time he discovered his trade and joy in helping his Uncle Jack work on automobiles in a garage off Reasor Street. This would serve Don well during and after his time in the service. He learned to play the drums from another uncle and entertained family and played in neighborhood clubs and “joints” in town. He is remembered most for playing the spoons.

Don served in the U.S. Army preparing for the invasion of Japan. He was in route for the invasion when the atomic bomb dropped. He served out the remainder of his time in Hawaii working in the motor pool and playing the drums. The GI Bill helped get him a job at Louisville Motor Exchange as a mechanic. LME began in 1937 by two gentlemen. After some eighteen months, Don purchased part ownership from one of the gentlemen. LME became the first Jasper Engine and Transmission distributor. He partnered in several other ventures including property, service station, and golf course. Some years later he would be the sole owner of Louisville Motor Exchange until closing in 1999.

Don is predeceased by Shirley Mae Kleier (Fowler), his wife of 63 years as well as a brother, Bernard “Bob” Kleier, and a sister Jean.
He leaves behind his four children, Debbie Bruenderman (David), Mike Kleier (Cindy), Mary Lynn Haas (Tim), and Beth Hopper (Brent). His grandchildren include Caroline Bruenderman, Elizabeth “Lizzie” Bruenderman, Donald Haas (Maura), Chris Haas (Beth), three great-grandchildren Joey, Remy, Alex, his brothers Ray Kleier, Jerry Kleier, and a host of family and friends who love him and will miss him.

His funeral Mass will be at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, July 10, 2018 at St. Raphael the Archangel Catholic Church on the corner of Lancashire Ave. and Bardstown Rd. with burial at Calvary Cemetery.

Visitation will be from 2:00 – 8:00 p.m. Monday at Highlands Funeral Home, 3331 Taylorsville Rd.

The family wishes to thank the Friars of the Franciscan Order for providing a foundation of faith in Christ, the caregivers at Baptist East, and the staff of the Episcopal Church Home, especially Dr. Jane Cornett and Mary Lou Zeh.

In lieu of flowers, the family request donations be made to the St. Xavier Student Aid Fund.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Donald Francis Kleier, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.

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