Mildred Gene LeonardFebruary 17th, 2021
Mildred Gene Leonard, 86, known as Gene or Genie, of Russellville, Missouri, passed away on Monday, February 8, 2021, at Capital Region Medical Center, Jefferson City. She was born on October 14, 1934, in Eminence, Missouri, a daughter of the late Lloyd and Minnie (Parsons) Wood. She was united in marriage on June 4, 1955, to Louis Arthur "Dink" Marler, who preceded her in death on February 1, 1985. Gene was blessed to find love a second time and married Clyde Leonard on June 8, 2008, in Bolivar, Missouri. Gene graduated from Eminence High School. She attended Southwest Baptist College, where she earned her Associates Degree in Education. She had a passion for teaching and serving God and others, and she enjoyed singing in the choir. During her ministry, she used her talents to develop a curriculum and methodology to teach Sunday School to special education students. She shared her methods with others through the Southern Baptist Convention, spreading her love of Jesus and the Gospel. She served at six churches over the years with Dink and was a member of Mt. Olive Baptist Church at the time of her death. She loved the people in her life unconditionally and had a unique talent for making everyone who met her feel special and cared for. During their 13 years of marriage, Gene and Clyde continued to serve the Lord, both as individuals and as a ministering couple. Clyde served as transitional pastor at five different churches during this time, and Gene served at his side at every one. Her loving arms embraced Clyde's family and she loved her time together with Clydene, Cheri, Cindy, and their families. Gene is survived by her husband, Clyde; Gene's daughters: Donna Miller (Al), Chris Santoyo (Graig), and Lisa Hickle (Steve); Clyde's daughters: Clydene Watson (Doug), Cheri Jones (Jim), and Cindy Swanigan (Russ); and a combined total of 17 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren: Julie Kapala (Tom) and sons Hunter and Parker; Lin Casper (Tim) and daughter Cora; Sallie Story (Dan); Chris Tomlinson (Aimee) and son Oliver; Matt Hickle (Lizzy Mouron) and daughters Ruth and Ginny; Stephanie Santoyo; Nate Santoyo (Janelle); Beth Hickle (Dylan Sample). Jonathan Watson; Nathan Watson (Caitlin) and children Lana and Silas; Michael Watson (Brenna); Leah Conner (Brint); Ashton Rutherford (Kyle) and children Kinley and Henry; Alexandra Jones; Gabriella Hanger (Wil) and daughter Evangeline; Abigail Greenwalt (Wyatt); Hunter Swanigan. Friends will be received from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., with a service immediately following on Friday, February 12, 2021, at Mt. Olive Baptist Church in Russellville, Missouri. Visitation will be from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 13, 2021, at Sandy Baptist Church in Hillsboro, Missouri, with a brief service at 2:00 p.m., and internment immediately following. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Dink and Gene Marler Endowment at Missouri Baptist University (give.mobap.edu). Select "Other" for the designation and specify "Dink and Gene Marler Endowment". Arrangements are under the direction of HOUSER-MILLARD Funeral Directors, 2613 West Main Street, Jefferson City, Missouri 65109 (573) 636-3838. Condolences may be left online for the family at www.millardfamilychapels.com.