Bessie B. Leonard

leonardbessieOctober 16, 1923 — October 19, 2016

Bessie Slayton Leonard (Turner) passed away Wednesday, October 19, 2016, at the Meadows Assisted Living, St George, Utah. She was 93 years old. Born October 16, 1923, in Winnsboro, Texas to William L Turner and Addy (Swanner) Turner.

Bessie grew up on a farm during the depression and knew the meaning of hard work. Her first job was at age 14 at a box manufacturing plant in Pittsburgh Texas. She proudly spoke of being able to “buy” her lunch at Pittsburg Hot Links across the street. Throughout her life family visiting her from Texas would bring Pittsburgh hot links with them. She ran a café in Seminole, Texas, worked at dry cleaners stores, motels as a maid and in the grocery industry. She ended her career as a grocery bagger at age 87 at Smiths Grocery on Bluff St. Bessie never knew a stranger and always had a smile and a hug for coworkers and customers.   

Bessie is survived by her daughter Karen Ann Pruitt (Ted) of Odessa, Texas. Grandchildren Hiram Mathews (Olga) Waxahachie, Texas, Jackie Matthews (Vickie) Waco, Texas, Amanda Navarrete, Odessa Texas and five great-grandchildren.

She is preceded in death by her husband Ross Leonard, Children Jerry Pruitt infant, Jerry Pruitt, 13, Nancy Slayton 14, Ronnie Pruitt 64. Siblings, Lou (Lee) Turner, William L Turner Jr, Maryjane Turner, Francis G Turner, husband Luther Pruitt and husband Oscar Slayton.    

Bessie later lived in Las Vegas, NV and retired to Central, UT with her husband Oscar Slayton. Oscar passed in 1979. In 1997 Bessie met and married Ross Leonard of Santa Clara, Utah. Their marriage was later solemnized in the St. George Temple. Ross was a wonderful man and they shared their twilight years traveling, visiting friends, and fishing. In the backyard, they grew a large garden and canned the harvest including Ross’s “famous” salsa. Active members of the LDS church they enjoyed volunteering at the cannery, processing peaches.

The family would like to thank Members of the Santa Clara First Ward especially Jill McArthur. Friend Helga Love. The staff of The Meadows, Integrated Senior Care Hospice and her health care providers.   

Funeral services

  • Funeral service will be held Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2016, at 1 p.m. at Pine View Mortuary 566 North Mall Drive, St. George, Utah 
  • A viewing will be held prior to services at noon to 12:45 p.m. at Pine View Mortuary
  • Interment will be held on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016, at Davis Memorial Park, 6200 South Eastern Avenue, Las Vegas, Nevada, 89119
  • Arrangements entrusted to the care of Pine View Mortuary 435-986-4222

Please visit our website for full obituary and funeral service listing.

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