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Born Jan. 16, 1935, in Theodosia, Mo. Leon Kelley, of Tahlequah, Okla., was buried Feb. 6, at Forest Haven Cemetery in Tulsa, Okla. He died Feb. 1, 2008, in St. John’s Hospital in Tulsa where he had been hospitalized since an automobile accident on Dec. 28, 2007.
Leon was born Jan. 16, 1935, in Theodosia, Mo., to Luie Kelley and Etta Mae Pellham Kelley. He graduated from Gainesville High School in 1952 and worked for Boeing Aircraft in Wichita, Kan., several years before relocating to Oklahoma.
On July 3, 1972, he was married to Marcelleta Rogers Lewallen at Miami, Okla. They moved to the Tahlequah area in 1977. He worked for Synergy Gas and the Tahlequah Mill before beginning the long daily commute to the Danaher Corp., in Springdale, Ark., retiring in 2000.
He loved his family deeply and treasured the time spent with them. He gave each grandchild a special nickname so they’d know how special they were to him.
Leon enjoyed the outdoors and liked to fish and hunt. He also enjoyed trips to Ozark County, Hootin an Hollarin, high school reunions, family get-togethers, and renewing the many long-time friendships maintained through the years.
“Kelley”, as he was known to family and friends, was an active member of the Valley Heights Free Will Baptist Church in Salina, Okla.
Preceding him in death were his parents, two infant brothers, Arnold and Eugene, and one sister, Oveta Clayton.
Survivors include his wife, Marcelleta, of the home; three daughters, Lynn Etta Bratcher and husband, Richard, of Springdale, Ark., Janice Kay Bennett and husband, John of Sand Springs, Okla., and Debbie Brunker and husband, Rodney, of Blanchard, Okla.; a son, Steve Lewallen and wife, Vicki, of Tahlequah, Okla.; two brothers, Don Kelley, of Sand Springs, Okla., and Doyle Kelley, of Ava; one sister, Mosolene Shaw, of Springfield; nine grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; and many family members and friends.