I was a student at the University of Toledo 1964-1968 and was very fortunate to have Prof. Leathers as a Professor. His upbeat atttude in the classroom and his clarity of thought was notable and he made a lasting impression on me. I was just rummaging through some old files and stumbled on a letter I received from him when he was Dean and decided to try to find him on line and see I was too late to thank him for the great educational experience he gave me. He was far too modest and I wish he would have told us more about his remarkable and inspiring life. He only displayed the tip of the iceberg in the classroom and that was enough to show his students that he was a remarkable man.
Dear Leathers Family:
I direct the US Navy Japanese/Oriental Language School Archival Project at the Archives, University of Colorado Boulder Libraries. Please accept my deepest condolences. Professor Leathers was a great example of the distinguished, interesting, humorous, and outstanding members of that group of WWII Navy and Marine interpreters who were sent to the Navy Japanese Language School at the University of Colorado and served in the Pacific War. It has been my honor and pleasure to have met or corresponded with more than 500 of these veterans. The hardest part of this job is saying goodbye to them. Professor Leathers shared some of his experiences with our project. We will miss him. Please let us know if we can be of assistance to your family.
I miss you dad. A son never forgets the lessons you teach them,and you taught me so much. I love you
We didn't realize that morning,
God was going to call your name.
In life we loved you dearly,
In death we do the same.
It broke our hearts to lose you,
but you did not go alone.
For part of us went with you,
The day God called you home.
You left us beautiful memories,
Your love is still our guide.
And though we cannot see you,
You are always by our side.
Our family chain is broken,
And nothing seems the same.
But as God calls us one by one,
The chain will link again. I love you dad always.
I remember Dr. Leathers as Provost of the University of Akron with both fondness and respect. He was a true leader and a gentleman. He helped me personally through some difficult times with several administrators. He served the University of Akron with distinction. My thoughts and prayers go out to all his relatives.
Dr. Leathers was a fine man and educator.The world is a lesser place without him.
So sorry to hear of Mr. Leathers passing. I was in his History class at Ponca City HS in the late 50's. Will always remember him as a wonderful teacher. Lana Harman Dunlap
I met Noel at the monthly vets lunch at O'Charley's restaurant in Cuyahoga Falls Ohio [first Monday each month] with other iwo jima vets. The story that Noel started in December was about the Japanese language [vowels] a,i,u,e,o. the way Noel talked about the Japanese language was he wanted you to know how to read, talk & listen to it, it turned to looking for a high ranking Japanese officer over radio chatter [pacific theater], trying to find what island he was on[through the vowels in the name of the Japanese officer] .when the U.S. pinpointed what island they waited until the plane took off and shot the plane down, the high ranking Japanese officer was later identified in the plane wreckage. I was listening to this & I could not sit still I wanted to turn on my recorder to get this part of history. The way Noel described that part of WWII history was significant to be one of the best history lessons. I went home and found one of his books [the Japanese in America] I wanted Noel to explain his book he wrote. Its not many times you get a veteran, history major, author & have lunch with. I would have enjoyed hearing more of his distinctive way of telling history even if he talked about the day would have been interesting listening. Dr. violet leathers I am deeply sorry for the loss
CUYAHOGA FALLS OHIO
The men and women who meet at O'Charley's the first Monday of the month were sad to hear of Noels passing.
He said his book was coming out and he was going to bring us a copy.
He was a gentle man and always had a smile and story.
We are sorry for your loss. He will be missed.
Dear Vi, You and yours are in our thoughts and prayers. Noel was such a dear friend for so many years, and as you know, we had so many wonderful times together. We will truly miss him. With deepest sympathy, Rube and Neom
Dr. Leathers, my Ponca High School teacher in 1959 and 1960, was a gifted educator. We remember him with great fondness.
Dearest Vi and Family,
It was such a pleasure knowing Noel. He was a true gentleman and scholar. He had such a wonderful sense of humor. I know he will be truly missed. Hugs and love to all of you. Ann, Ed, Alex and Amanda Katz, Westport, CT
I MET MR LEATHERS AT UOAKRON HE USE TO HAVE LUNCH AT THE MARTIN CENTER WHERE I WORKED HE WAS ONE OF THE OF THE GENTELMAN WHO HAD A CLASS OF HIS OWN TO HIS FAMILY MAY THE HEALING GRACE OF TIME BE YOURS
I am one of the many, many people whose lives have been bettered for Dr. Leathers' influence. He helped me realize a potential I had previously only been told I hever reached, travel across the seas,and complete my education. My condolences.
Noel was one of the three great teachers I have been fortunate to have in a lifetime. I include in that the whole way through MIT and Stanford graduate schools. He had deep knowledge, an unusual ability to recall facts and synthesize them into historical perspectives - and a great sense of humor that made him impossible not to like. He was fearless about expressing his points of view, whether or not they agreed with the local norms. And he mentored students in every way possible, from getting rather shy science-oriented students like me on the stage occasionally, to writing recommendation letters that had a big part in getting them accepted at their universities of choice.
And now, he has finished his last book, just weeks before he died - a great and informative book- giving us each an example of how to live life to the very fullest as long as we are fortunate to live.
As it turns out, I was speaking with him the day before he died and it is amazing to me how active his mind remained literally until the very end. I will miss him very much.
Vi, Tammy and family -
On behalf of my mom, Thelma Esker, and on behalf of the Esker family, know that our prayers and thoughts are with you on Noel's passing. His long service as a teacher, his love for what he did, and the clearly longlasting impressions he made on the many lives he touched render a legacy that will not be forgotten. Love and Godspeed, Thelma Esker and the Esker Family
I'm so sorry for your loss, Mr. Leathers was one of my favorite teachers at Ponca City High. I wish I had been able to talk to him one last time.
Noel Leathers made the shy German exchange student welcome at the Ponca City senior high school. Without his extraordinary and warmhearted care I would have been lost.
I will keep his last letter to me of 12-19-2012 close to my heart.
Albert Hoser German student at POHI in 1951
Noel Leathers was the most dynamic and interesting teacher I had in the Ponca City Senior High school. His stories of military service were facinating.
What a good, long, productive life! The 12 or so years he taught at Ponca City, OK High School produced a number of historians. He was so inspirational. And I never hear Beethoven's 9th Symphony without being transported to his classroom--where it was frequently heard. Adelia Hanson
Noel was a great man. I feel honored to have known him. Mimi and I send our deepest sympathy to Vi, his devoted wife and best friend. . . . Everyone who knew and respected Noel should read his wonderful book, Relections on the Pacific War, which he completed and published shortly before his death.
One never forgets outstanding teachers. I was so fortunate to have known his, wit, tales of the war on a Pacific Island and knowledge of history and civics. I also babysat the kids at times in Ponca City. He made a difference in this world!
Dr. Leathers was a fine man, and one I am lucky to have known and worked with when he was Provost at U-Akron, and I was the secretary in the Economics
Department. What a smile!
I was fortunate to be in one of his high school history classes. He truly expanded our horizons. I already have a copy of his new book and appreciate that he shared his experiences with the world.
May his family have joy in knowing how positively he affected so many lives.
When I was a senior at Ponca City HS, Mr. Leathers helped me write a feature article for the school newspaper. We had a new exchange student who spoke no English, so Mr. Leathers translated my questions and his answers. (I'm retired, and I still have that article!) Mr. Leathers may have been a major factor in my decision to become a teacher. I only wish I could have been half as good as he was. He will always be fondly remembered, and I purchased his newest book as soon as I knew about it!
Anita Bottoms Housley - Class of 1958
I was privileged to have Dr. Leathers as a professor in a history colloquium in the spring of 1983. I remember lively discussions and his passion for teaching. More importantly, I remember how deeply he cared about us students. (For example, to celebrate the end of the semester, he took the entire class to lunch at The Lamplighter.)
I was delighted to reconnect with Tammy at our 30th reunion and to discover that this special man was her beloved stepfather.
He will be missed by many.
With Deepest Sympathy,
I was privileged to have Dr. Leathers as a professor for a history colloquium in the spring of 1983. I remember lively discussions and his passion for teaching. Most importantly, I remember how deeply he cared about his students and he showed us in many ways. (I'll never forget him treating us to lunch at The Lamplighter to celebrate the end of the semester.)
I was excited to reconnect with Tami at our 30th high school reunion and to find out that this special man was her beloved stepfather.
He will be missed by many.
With Deepest Sympathy,
My husband and I were Noel's students in Ponca City. We talk about him frequently and are grateful for the skills he gave us, particularly the ability to think critically. He was a great man.
I spoke with him for over an hour just days before he died. He was my high school history teacher. He seemed fine and we had a wonderful conversation. I can't hardly comprehend this! What a great scholar, marine, teacher and friend. Semper Fi.
My thoughts and prayers are with your family--I'm so sorry for your loss.
My thought & prayers go out to you Aunt Vi & your entire family. God by with him.
I only knew Noel through our talks, your discriptions and stories, but I knew how truely special and how loved he was. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family. Keep his smile in your heart. Love you.
Dear Vi - I just heard of Noel's passing. He will be long remembered as an extraordinary person and friend as well as an exemplary leader and teacher. I am sorry that I can't be there for his services, and I am also teaching tonight during your calling hours (knowing Noel would not approve of an instructor cancelling a class for him, dear man). But my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family and the many people who loved and will miss him. John T. and Ed will likely be watching for him...telling tall tales. With much affection from Charmaine
I was very sad to see the passing of Dr. Leathers. He was a fine professor and I enjoyed his class on Japan while I attending Akron U back in 1986. He had a generous spirit and a real love for his students. I had a chance meeting with Dr. Leathers at a store last year and was glad to see he was doing well. My sympathies to the Leathers family. He was truly a special person and I will always remember his kindness to me.
He was a fabulous person and teacher!!! He was a profound influence in my life. I was one of his high students in Ponca City, Oklahoma and many, many of the other students felt the same way about him!!!
I am so blessed to have known him and to have had him as my teacher!
To Vi and Noel's family:
He was my first boss at the University of Akron and a good friend, wonderful colleague and a friend of my college. As an academic administrator he was the best; decisive, fair and insightful. He knew what it took to reach a high level of excellence. He took risks where others would balk. The College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering would not have progressed as far and as fast without Noel's support. The college faculty gave him a Steuben Glass eagle when he retired to show how much he was appreciated. Needless to say we will cherish his memory
Dear Vi, I gathered a great deal of strength from Noel because he was positive about life. He was generous with the time he spent with me during the passing of my wife, Madaline. I'll miss our luncheon meetings where we attempted to "solve" the world's strife. He honored me in signing his newly published book, "Reflections on the Pacific War" copy #1, January 10, 2013. Vi, the loss of Noel is shared by his many friends and relatives; may his memory be eternal. With deepest sympathy ~ George
I am so sorry to hear of Provost Leathers passing... of all of the Provosts we have had at UA during my 20 years here, he was my favorite... I was just talking about him a few weeks ago and telling some stories about what a good leader he was...
Noel's passing is a loss for us all, he was one of the true "good guys" who will be sadly missed and never forgotten. He was brilliant, kind, gentle and effervescent and could get his point across easily by talking with you in a calm, pleasant manner, always with a broad, warm smile despite the seriousness or urgency of the matter at hand. Dr. Noel was a class act who made us the better for knowing him; certainly if there were more like him the world it would definitely be a better place. We mourn his passing and feel the pain and sorrow that his family is experiencing; however, we truly believe that this separation is only temporary knowing that we will meet again in a far better place than what this earth has to offer. May God bless him and his family until such time as we complete our earthly journey and are all reunited and together again in the Lord's House.Noel's passing is a loss for us all, he was one of the true "good guys" who will be sadly missed and never forgotten.
Vi, I was your classmate in Ancient Greek class. My sympathies on your loss. Dr. Leathers was a remarkable man! Take care, Marlene (Rotunda) Glennon, email@example.com
Dr. Leathers was a great human being. I really enjoyed working with him and missed his stories and spirit when he retire. My best to you, Vi.
Dear Vi, I'm sorry to learn of Noel's passing. I remember him as Provost and being a conscientious and fair man. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.
What a very special man Noel was. His absence will be deeply felt by all who knew him. Memory Eternal.
My love and thoughts are with the family and friends.
So sorry to hear of Dr. Leathers passing. I will always remember his smile and his kindness. May his memory be eternal.
I have been so blessed to have had the priveledge of visiring and hearing "some" of his life's journey over a quiet lunch in he and his wife's home. Dr. Leathers is truely an extraordinary person and will be missed greatly. May your Memory be Eternal.
Your Wisconsin friends send their love, thoughts and prayers. We've all lost a dear friend and travel buddy! Our friendship and love as we pray for Noel and you! God Bless. Nancy, Deb and Tom
I was lucky enough to know Noel through his family. He was one of the most interesting and kind person's I have ever had the pleasure to encounter. I spent many holiday's and family functions with him and I will always treasure those memories. He will be truly missed.
with him and his family and I will always cherish those memories.
My deepest condolences to you. I have only fond remembrances of both you and your husband in the years I have known you. I send you my best wishes,
Needless to say, we were saddened to learn of Noel's passing. He was a good friend and one we will miss.
Please accept our most prayerful sympathy.
Caesar and Lynda Carrino
Vi; Our deepest sympathy.
Dear Vi and family, we were very sorry to hear about Noel's passing. Although we are miles apart, you are in our thoughts and prayers. We will always remember our friendship with you and Noel.Memory Eternal, Love Dave and Rose
Vi, So sorry to hear about Noel. I will miss him and his stories. He a real friend and teacher to me. Even in our last lunch together he tried to teach me some Japanese.
I am sorry to learn of the passing of Dr. Leathers. I am happy to be reminded of his vibrant, long and varied life. I remember Dr. Leathers for being very approachable, helpful and sincere as a University of Akron administrator during my undergraduate years there in the 1970's. Good thoughts to his family.
Vi. Bev and I were truly honored to meet Noel and you. We were amazed at his recollection and his positive view of life and the love of life. We enjoyed his many stories. We will miss him.
Jack and Bev
I only had the opportunity to meet Mr. & Mrs. Leathers once but could feel their sweet friendship at that time. He will be missed by his beloved friend and my employer, George George. I look forward to reading Mr. Leather's book. Thoughts are with you Vi, even from people you've only met once! Jan
Vi, so sorry to hear of Noel's passing. He was such a wonderful man We loved seeing both of you in the office. My thoughts and prayers are with you!
Tammy, so sorry for your loss. You're in my thoughts and prayers. Kelly Turle
Mrs. Leathers I am so sorry to hear about Mr. Leathers passing. I always enjoyed talking with him when I would come home. He will be missed GREATLY. Ken Pruchnicki
We are sorry to hear about Noel's passing. It was such a pleasure to have met him and yourself.
May his memory be enternal.
Mike & Athena
Dear Vi, my thoughts and prayers are with you and all of the family during this difficult time. I have many great memories of my Uncle Noel. Take to all. Love, Susan J. Leathers xo
We are so sorry to hear about the passing of Dr. Noel. He was very much loved by our family, and we will always remember his intellect, wit, friendship, love, and wonderfully kind heart. You are in our prayers and may his memory be eternal.
Will sincerest sympathy,
Greg, Nancy, Geoff, & Matt George
I only met him once, and wished I would have had more time to talk history with him...
He will be missed by all...
My thoughts are with the family . I only knew Noel thru the wonderful stories that Tammy would share . May he rest in peace until you meet again !
From my heart to your heart .
Noel will be missed by many. I always enjoyed talking to Noel about many things and seeing his eyes light up when he told me military history stories. It is a blessing that Noel is in a place where there is no pain , sorrow or suffering, but life everlasting. May his Memory be Eternal!
Lou & Lynn