Floral 14

Dorothy Mae Leonard

June 19, 1928 ~ May 21, 2020 (age 91)


Dorothy Mae Cain Leonard was born June 19, 1928, in Burkeville, Alabama to the late Eddie and Callie Cain.  She was the second oldest of three siblings. Dorothy met the love of her life Wiley Leonard , at Fairfield Industrial High School in Alabama.  As the year progressed, Dorothy and Wiley decided to start a life together and joined in marriage, December 25, 1945.  In 1946, the newlyweds moved to Gary, Indiana; a place where life began for the Leonard Family.  Later that year, they joined Greater St. James Church and became active life-time members.  Dorothy became a member of the Parkettes and Usher Board Organizations.  In addition to her family, Dorothy was passionate about her garden of flowers and Civil Rights activities.  She joined the Urban League and the Fair Share Organization to support racial equality.  Dorothy loved and enjoyed cooking.  Family memories of Dorothy ("mom" and "grandmommy") included nights spent in the kitchen before holidays watching and learning how she baked amazingly delicious cakes, pies, turkeys, etc.  Dorothy and Wiley always enjoyed family and friends, sitting around the kitchen table, telling stories, laughing, and eating her scrumptious fried chicken, catfish and cornbread.  Dorothy's special recipes have been a continued tradition of her children.  Dorothy's belief and passion for educating young people, led her to Nurseryland Foundation.  While there approximately 35 years, Dorothy held the initial position of Instructor and later became the Director of Early Childhood Education.  She leaves to celebrate her life and cherish her memories: Wiley Leonard, beloved husband of 74 years; 6 daughters, Kathleen Wilson, Mariola Williams, Beverly Leonard, Phyllis (Richard) Wingfield, Sharon Leonard (Saleem) Sheriff, and Wanda Leonard-Pettigrew; 10 grandchildren, Darryl Wilson, Derrick Wilson, Troy Isom, Yolanda Pitts, Kimberly Isom (Scott) Ficek, Marlon (Jennifer) Hannon, Annester Griffin, Sayeeda Abdul-Alahad (Ahmad) Attia, Robert (Victoria) Pettigrew, and Ryon Pettigrew; 13 great-grandchildren, Alexia and Tatianna Isom, Shawn and Andrew Pitts, Isley and Aniya Griffin, Wyatt (Manny) Cobbs and Aubrey Dillon, Elijah and Isaiah Hannon, Aleksandr Ficek,  and Thanaa and Naimah Mahmoudi; 1 great-great grandchild, Chance Pitts, and a host of nieces, nephews; great-nieces and great- nephews, great-great nieces and great-great nephews, relatives and friends. Dorothy was preceded in death by her parents, Eddie and Callie Mae Cain; siblings, Marie Adams and Eddie Cain, Jr. 

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