Zachary Taylor Leonard, Jr., 89, of Statesville, NC, died May 31, 2014 at Grand Strand Medical Center in Myrtle Beach, SC. He was born November 16, 1924 in Pineville, Kentucky, the son of Zachary Taylor Leonard and Annie Pearce Leonard. He grew up in Charlotte, NC and graduated from Central High School in 1942. He served in the US Army during WWII in the 350thth Infantry, Company B, 88th Division in Italy where he earned the rank of Sargeant along with three Bronze Stars. He attended Davidson College where he earned a BS in Business and remained a Wildcat fan throughout his life.
In 1948 he married Shirley Moreen Parks of Statesville, NC and made the town his own. Founded in 1961, he owned and operated Leonard Manufacturing Company, Inc. for 30 years. Flying was his passion and after earning his pilot’s license in 1972 was proud to have logged more air time than most private pilots in the Statesville area with his J-3 Piper Cub during the 70’s and 80’s. Another passion was his love of opera and classical music. He was a strong supporter of WDAV public radio affiliated with Davidson College.
Along with his wife of 43 years, Taylor was pre-deceased by one brother, Robert Leonard and one sister, Carey Leonard Howard. He is survived by his sister, Margaret (Peggy) Leonard Miller of Charlotte. He is also survived by two daughters, Leslie Leonard Keller (husband Dwight Keller) of Statesville and Carol Leonard Lytton (late husband Charles A. Lytton) of Myrtle Beach with whom he has lived for the past year. Surviving are two grandsons, Joshua Mitchell Hallman and Jonathan Taylor Hallman of Greensboro, NC.
Also surviving are two brothers-in-law, L.A. Parks, Jr. (wife Frances) of Cleveland and Sherrill V. Parks (wife Virginia) of Mooresville. He leaves behind a multitude of extended family and friends who loved and highly respected this man of deep convictions and integrity.
Special thanks to the Hallman Family for their unwavering support and to Brenda Elliot who served him morning coffee for 27 years and has been his online buddy ever since. Information regarding a Celebration of Life service is incomplete at this time. Nicholson Funeral Home of Statesville, NC will be making the arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to WDAV 89.9, Box 8990, 423 N. Main St., Davidson, NC 28035-8990. Online condolences can be made to the family at www.nicholsonfunerals.com/obituaries.