Mayor Dave Lechniak had a presence that would fill up a room and as a lifelong resident of South Williamsport his impact in the borough will be missed.
“He had a contagious laugh,” said Lechniak’s daughter Tiffany Baier. “Everybody knew it when he would walk into the room. He didn’t have to say anything, but you knew he was there.”
Just two weeks after being diagnosed with COVID-19, Lechniak, 65, lost his battle with the virus on Dec. 30. He had been South Side’s mayor for 11 years.
In Lycoming County, there were over 6,000 COVID-19 cases in 2020 and 121 deaths.
‘Served his community’
Lechniak is survived by his wife of 44 years, Christine, their two children, Tiffany Baier and Todd Lechniak, and four grandchildren.
Baier said her father always had a big heart for helping others.
“He would give you the shirt off his back if it was something that someone needed,” Baier said. “He really served his community and loved everyone in it.”
In recent years, his friends and family will agree that Lechniak lived for his grandkids, beaming with delight when they came into the room.
“He melted when he saw them,” Baier said.
‘A big heart’
Lechniak’s death was sudden and shocking. After being admitted to the hospital, the mayor seemed to be doing well.
Long-time friend Adam Welteroth spoke with him on the phone on Monday, Dec. 21 and the pair joked about how good the mayor sounded for someone with COVID-19.
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