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Ocala - Don Leonard passed away December 19, 2012 at Estelle House, Hospice, in Ocala, FL.
He is survived by his wife, Barbara, son, Troy, daughter, Tracy Roberts, six grandchildren, and brothers Robert (Bob) Leonard and Tom Leonard.
Don retired from Marion County Education System. During his career, Don was a teacher, coach, assistant principal, and coordinator of Marion County Adult and Community Education. Upon his retirement, Don became a professional storyteller and shared his stories with many people.
Don enjoyed being part of his community. He treasured his time as a member of the Ocala Kiwanis Club and the Silver Springs Shores Elks Lodge. In each of these organizations, he was involved in their outreach to young people. While a member of the Silver Springs Shores Elks, he was in charge of the Youth Hoop shoot at the local and district level and assisted on the regional level. In 1988-89, Don was the "Elk of the Year" at his lodge. He was the co-founder of the Ocala Storytelling Guild and the Ocala Storytelling Festival. Don started the Mother's Love Luncheon to benefit Hospice in memory of his mother, Dorothy Leonard. He also served on the Board of the Florida Storytelling Association, and in 2005 was the Southeast recipient of the prestigious "Oracle Award" for Leadership and Service by the National Storytelling Network.
Don attended grammar school in Holly Hill, FL and graduated from Mainland High School where he was President of his 1959 senior class. Don attended Florida State University. He was a member of Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity and the FSU Flying High Circus. He met his wife while at FSU and they were married for 49 years.
There will be a Celebration of Life for Don on Saturday, January 12, 2013 at the Country Club of Ocala, 6823 SE 12th Circle. The celebration will begin at 3PM. You are invited to visit after the service.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to New Horizon Academy for Exceptional Students, 1100 NE 31st St., Ocala 34479 (school for children on the autism spectrum) or Hospice of Marion County.
Arrangements by Roberts Funeral Homes, Bruce Chapel East, 732-9944. A condolence message may be left at:
Roberts Funeral Home, Bruce Chapel East
2739 SE Maricamp Road
Ocala, FL 34471
Published in Ocala Star-Banner from Jan. 6 to Jan. 7, 2013