It is with great sadness that the family of Leonel Hector Herrera, MD, LTC, announces his passing after a brief fight with cancer. He died peacefully while surrounded by his family in his home in Volin, SD on Friday, January 26th 2018, at the age of 67.
Leonel was an accomplished healer, educator, coach, loving husband, and fan of his children and grandchildren. His Catholic faith provided a foundation for how he lived, raised his children, and loved his wife.
He was born on November 13, 1950 in San Antonio, TX to David and Carmen Herrera. He graduated from St. Louis University with a Bachelor’s degree in Physical Therapy; University of Nebraska College of Medicine with a Doctorate of Medicine; University of Nebraska College of Medicine / Creighton University Neurology Residency Program.
In 1970, he married Yolanda and enlisted in the US Air Force. He quickly excelled and was offered the opportunity of going to school to further his education. After graduating from St Louis University in 1976, he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant and assigned to the 55th Medical Group at Offutt AFB as a Physical Therapist where he attained the rank of Captain in 1980. He held this position until 1985 when he graduated from the University of Nebraska College of Medicine. He completed his internship in Internal Medicine at Creighton University Hospital. He finished his Neurology training in the Creighton University-University of Nebraska Joint Residency program. In 1990, he opened up his own private practice, Midwest Neurology and Rehabilitation Associates P.C. in Sioux City, IA. In 1999, Capt. Herrera was recommissioned as a Major in the US Army Reserves. He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 2004 and held that rank until his retirement in 2010 where he commanded the 388th Medical Battalion, Army Reserve Unit in Hays, Kansas. Starting in 2000, he began working at Great West Casualty Company in South Sioux City, NE where he held his position as Vice President and Medical Director until his final days. He also remained active in private practice on a part-time basis at Tri-State Specialists in Sioux City, IA.
In the 80s and 90s, he was an enthusiastic soccer player, who enjoyed the pleasure of playing on a team aptly named the Holy Name “Wheezers” where he and Yolanda formed many long lasting friendships.
He was preceded in death by his parents David and Carmen Herrera and his brother David Herrera.
Leonel is survived by his wife, Yolanda Herrera; four sons, Leonel Herrera (Stephanie) of Bahrain, LD Herrera (Colleen) of Vermillion, Daniel Herrera (Andrea) of Vermillion, David Herrera of Colorado Springs, CO; three daughters, Katie Herrera of Vermillion, Kathy Herrera of Vermillion, Kelsie Herrera of Yankton, SD. Leonel will also be fondly remembered by his eight grandchildren, Carolanne, Quinton, Josie, Dominic, Brooklyn, Kiara, Natalie, and Micah.
Viewing will be from 5 – 7 pm and will be followed by a Rosary and Prayer Service on Wednesday, January 31st at St. Agnes Catholic Church in Vermillion.
Funeral Services will be held on Thursday, February 1, 2018 at 10:30am, at St. Agnes Catholic Church, with Fr. John Fischer officiating. Interment will follow at St. Agnes Calvary Cemetery. A reception will follow at the parish hall. All are welcome to attend and celebrate Leonel's life.
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