Sunday, February 25, 2018

Burton Leland passes away at the age of 69

Burton Leland
Burton Leland, who represented the Warrendale neighborhood in both the Michigan House of Representatives and Michigan Senate for 26 years, passed away this morning. He was 69 years of age at the time of his passing. In later years, Leland represented Wayne County's 6th district on the County Commission.

During his time in the Michigan Legislature, Burton Leland was a tireless advocate for consumer rights. In 1986, while serving the state house, he sponsored Michigan's Lemon Law that protected buyers from defective automobiles.

Burton Leland was also a relentless public servant for the Warrendale neighborhood. Whenever the Warrendale Community Organization needed something during his almost three decades of representing us, he was one of the few elected officials that residents could consistently count on.

Burton Leland's son Gabe Leland continues to represent the Warrendale and surrounding neighborhoods on the Detroit City Council.

Burton Leland was also proud of his Jewish faith. I attended a meeting of the Wayne County Commission a few years back when, at Leland's urging, a Jewish rabbi delivered the invocation. The invocation is normally held before the start of each meeting and his lead by a local religious leader. However, that was the first time in Wayne County's more than 200 year history that a rabbi was invited to perform this ceremonial role.

Details for Burton Leland's funeral are not currently available. When they become public, I will share them here.

On a personal note, I want to add that I write this post with a tremendous amount of sadness. I have spoken with Burton Leland on more occasions than I can remember over the past 30 years - going all the way back to my days as a high school student in a government class. I was always impressed with his intellect, his dedication, and a love for Michigan and its people that will continue to live on with every person that he ever met.

Update @ 10:48 p.m.
I have learned that the funeral for Burton Leland will be at 2 p.m. this Tuesday, February 27. The service will be at the Ira Kaufman Chapel (18325 W. Nine Mile in Southfield). More information is available here.
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