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Elevator Industry Mourns Passing of Leopoldo Celaya

Leopoldo Celaya, retired after a long career as a machinist in the elevator industry, died peacefully at his home in Phoenix, Arizona, on September 28. He was 80 years old. Celaya was born January 4, 1941, in Oquitoa, Sonora, Mexico, the youngest of 12 children, and raised in Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico. He came to the U.S. in 1963, and three years later met the love of his life, Natividad (Naty). The couple married on September 20, 1969. As a young man, he worked as a trucker, but became a machinist at Elevator Equipment Company in Los Angeles, where he worked for 51 years before his retirement in 2019, followed by his move to Phoenix. He was known by different nicknames throughout his life. At work, he was “Leo”; to his family he was “Polo”; to childhood friends he was “Tirri”; and to his nephew he was “Chaca.” He is survived by his wife, Naty; his son, Victor; his daughter, Rita; 10 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by another son, Francisco, his sister, Olga Grijalva, and many nephews and nieces.

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