Late Sunday night, April 4, 2021, Jack Leyh went to be with his Lord and Savior into the glories of Heaven. Jack was born on June 2, 1923 as the fourth child to John and Maude Leyh. Jack enlisted as a soldier in the U.S. Army during World War II. While serving in Germany he was captured and was a Prisoner of War for seven months held by the Germans.
He met his future wife, Edna Marie, which he called “Babe” after being released while being processed as a POW, in Fort Lewis, WA. “Babe” drove the transport trucks for the soldiers who were being released from the German Prisoner of War camps. Upon his release from the Army in 1945, he returned to Tulsa and began working in construction. Soon he was married to his Babe, Edna Marie, in May of 1946. In March of 1947, they had their only child, Ronald John, who was named after the then actor, Ronald Reagan. Jack continued working in construction until 1955, when he took a job with American Airlines. He worked as a stock clerk, providing parts for the mechanics until he retired in 1982.
Jack’s hobbies included training and campaigning beagle hounds. He was a member of several beagle clubs across the Western region and produced many hounds that attained the status of “field champion”. He and his wife, Edna Marie, enjoyed traveling to area auctions and estate sales and acquired a “museum like’ house full of collectibles. He lost his beloved “Babe”, in 1983.
In 1985, he met Lotha Smith, who became his running buddy and loving companion. They enjoyed traveling together individually to beagle hound trials and on group bus tours. They traveled to every state in the United States together and much of Canada, with the exception of Hawaii. When they met, he said he would like to travel. Lotha told him, she did not have much money. He told her, “I got the money” and she laughed and replied, “then I got the time.” They continued as running buddies until her death in June 2007. With Lotha, came many children and grandchildren that he always loved like they were his own. He would say “for someone that only had one son, he sure ended up with a lot of kids.”
After the death of his companion, Lotha, he and his son, Ron, began travelling to Hot Springs, AR, enjoying the horse races and spending time together.
Jack has been preceded in death by his wife, Edna Marie, his father and mother, John J and Maude, his sister's, Bernice and Evelyn, his brother, Johnny, his nephew James Sunderland, his loving companion, Lotha Smith.
Survivors include his only son, Ronald, his nephew’s, Wesley and John, his niece, Teresa, and his loving daughters, Milana and Frankie, four granddaughters and one great grandson, many great nieces and nephews and numerous great-great nieces and nephews.
Over the last years of his life, he was honored abundantly. He was part of the Honor Flight and flown to Washington, D.C. He received an award from Rep. Jim Bridenstine from the State of Oklahoma. He was also honored by Rep. Wade Rousselot at the Oklahoma House of Representative by being the first veteran to lead Oklahoma Congress in the “Pledge of Allegiance” and presented with an American flag and a Citation. Jack was a life-time honorary member of Rolling Thunder Oklahoma, which is a non-profit organization whose main goal is to support all veterans from all wars. He was an active life-time member of the local Coweta chapter of the American Legion Group and has a plaque in the American Legion Memorial located at the City of Coweta. Jack was also a member of the Coweta Church of God of Prophecy.
He will be greatly missed by his family, his friends and the entire community of Coweta and the surrounding area. We have surely lost a great and powerful American soul.
Memorial donations may be made in memory of Jack to the American Legion Post 226, 600 S. Broadway, Coweta, Oklahoma 74429.
Visitation will be from 9:00 AM – 8:00 PM on Thursday, April 8, 2021 at Brown Funeral Home in Coweta with the family present from 6:00 – 8:00 PM. Services celebrating Jack’s life will be at 10:00 AM on Friday, April 9, 2021 at the Coweta Assembly of God in Coweta, Oklahoma with Pastor Larry Duncan officiating. Jack will be laid to rest at Memorial Park Cemetery in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Pallbearers are Hoss Hopping, Joe Hopping, Shane Troy, Arvil Morgan, Mark Johnson, Terry Horne, Kent Blair, and Raymond Holmes. Honorary Pallbearers are Wesley Hopping, Jack Chartier, and Gary Garoutte.
Family and friends may share memories online at www.brownfamilycares.com. The family of Jack W. Leyh entrusted his care and services to Brown Funeral Home & Cremations, 210 S. Broadway, Coweta, Oklahoma 74429, 918-486-5515.
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