Leona Lucile McDaniel
September 21, 1924 – October 24, 2020
Family Graveside Services for Leona McDaniel will be held Friday, November 6, 2020, at the Eads Cemetery in Eads. Per Leona’s request there will be no public visitation.
Leona Lucile (Barlow) McDaniel passed away at the age of 96 on October 24, 2020 in Pueblo. She was born to Elmer F. and Rowena Hoxie (Rutledge) Barlow in Santa Fe, Kansas, September 21, 1924, the ninth, of twelve children. Shortly after, the family moved (along with the town of Santa Fe) to Sublette, Kansas. Later, the family moved to Holcomb, Kansas, and finally settled in Eads.
Despite her rural upbringing, Leona had many fascinating stories of her childhood. While growing up in Kansas, Leona was introduced to a friend’s family members, the Fleagle Brothers, before they became known as the Fleagle Gang, a notorious ring of local bank robbers and murderers. The Fleagle Gang later robbed the First National Bank of Lamar in 1928, killing the bank president and his son. Leona also knew and attended church with the Clutter family; the family was infamously murdered in their home in Holcomb, Kansas, in 1959 and their story is documented in Truman Capote’s Pulitzer Prize nominated book “In Cold Blood”.
After World War II, she met a handsome returning Army veteran named Daniel Wilkins McDaniel and the two married on April 21, 1947. Early in their marriage, the two worked in Daniel’s family’s cafe in Eads and the recipes and cooking skills the two honed there made family meals, especially ones featuring fried chicken, something to truly look forward to for the whole family. While living in Eads, they had two children, Marsha Lynn and Robert Lance. Daniel was later transferred to Fountain where their third child, Donald Wayne, was born. In 1964, Daniel was transferred to Lamar where all three children finished school.
During the late 60’s and early 70’s Leona worked at Fashion Fabrics in Lamar. In 1980, Daniel was transferred to Dodge City, Kansas, where the couple lived until his retirement. After his retirement, they returned to Lamar to live. After Daniel’s death in 2009, Leona stayed in Lamar until 2010, when she then moved to Alamosa to live with her daughter Marsha. After Marsha’s retirement in 2014 they moved to Pueblo, where she remained until her death.
Leona had many and varied interests. She was highly involved throughout her life with the United Methodist Church and the United Methodist Women organization. She sewed a lot of the clothes worn by her family, she also enjoyed crochet and needle work. She loved putting together jigsaw puzzles and playing word puzzles and games. She loved to read books and almost never missed an episode of The Young and the Restless. Amazingly, she also enjoyed shoveling snow, and had a passionate hatred for dandelions, reveling in their eradication. She continued to enjoy all of these activities well into her 90’s.
Leona, or Grandma Mac as she was known by her grandchildren, will be remembered by her family as a no-nonsense but loving family matriarch. She taught them all to have a strong work ethic, solid moral compass, and commitment to helping their communities and those in need.
Leona is preceded in death by her parents, Elmer and Rowena Barlow; husband, Daniel; and all eleven of her siblings, Clyde Barlow, Thelma (Orvis) O’Dell, Merle (Janet) Barlow, Gerald Barlow, Beulah Barlow, Frank (Marg) Barlow, Cledith (Raymond) Crist, Edith (Louis) McDaniel, Lee Roy Barlow, Donald (Sandy) Barlow, and Donna Jean Miller.
She is survived by all three of her children, Marsha McDaniel, Robert (Barbara) McDaniel, and Donald (Vicky) McDaniel; seven grandchildren, Tyrone Huss, Barbara Houston, Robi Ehrlick, Jamie Hernandez, Casey McDaniel, Ashley McDaniel, and Shaughnessy McDaniel; 10 great-grandchildren; one great great grandchild; brothers-in-law, Harvey Hollis, Bob Miller, and Don McDaniel; many other relatives and a host of friends.
Arrangements are under the direction of Valley Memorial Funeral Chapel.