James Russell Leasley
November 3, 1925 - September 17, 2020
Fort Worth, Texas - James Russell Leasley, 94, peacefully went to be with his Lord and Savior on Thursday, September 17, 2020.
Memorials: In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Randy Leasley Scholarship Fund at www.wacofoundation.org
or by check to the Waco
Foundation, c/o Randy Leasley Scholarship Fund, 1227 N. Valley Mills Drive, Suite 235, Waco, Texas 76710.
James, who went by Jimmy, was born on November 3, 1925 in Memphis, Tennessee. He was an only child who was raised in Diboll, Texas by his parents, Russell and Essie. By the age of 12 Jimmy had lost both of his parents and was then raised by guardian parents. He attended Allen Military Academy for Boys from 7th to 12th grade in Bryan, Texas. After graduation Jimmy attended Texas A&M University where he walked on to the Cross-Country Team. His time at A&M was interrupted by World War II where he served in the Air Force as a Gunner and was stationed in Japan. After his time in service he returned to the states and enrolled at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, where he graduated with a BBA degree. Soon after graduation Jimmy met his wife, Margaret Washington, whom he married in May of 1950 and remained married to until her death in 2017.
Jimmy started his career in Waco with The Prudential Insurance Company and was transferred to Fort Worth in 1956 and continued a 45-year long career with Prudential as an Insurance Agent, retiring at the age of 72.
Jimmy always wanted a large family and he and Margaret raised five children together. He was a very loving, involved and devoted father. Through the years Jim coached all of his children in various sports and loved attending his grandchildren's sporting events as well. Jimmy was not only close to his children but also very involved and close to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Jimmy loved golf, coaching and most of all his Baylor Bears. He was always dressed in his green and gold and hardly ever missed a Baylor Sporting Event.
He and Margaret were active longtime members of Riverside Baptist Church where he served as a deacon for many years. In the early 70's Jimmy was part of a ministry at RBC that would pick up children on buses and bring them to church.
Jimmy was very passionate about this ministry and gave up golf on Saturdays so he could visit these homes and get these children into church. He wanted everyone to have the chance to know Jesus and this ministry reached thousands of children over the years.
Jimmy was preceded in death by his wife, Margaret and his beloved son, Randy.
We want to give our loving thanks to dad's awesome caregivers and how well they took care of him.
Jimmy is survived by sons, Larry Leasley, Kenneth and wife, Barbara Leasley; daughters, Laura Shoemake and fiancé, Johnny Thomasson, Kathleen and husband, Randall Stepp; grandchildren, Kelly and George Suarez, Karson and Scott Maxey, Whitney and Matt Warren, Rachel and Garrison Lackey, Sonny Stepp, Matthew Shoemake, Jill and Bryan Darling; great-grandchildren, Landry, Ellie, Sophie, and Emily Suarez, Mallory, Will, and Ben Maxey, Weston Pinckard, Jackson Darling, and Townes Warren.