Mon Aug 8, 2022

Leo Edison Creech

Cedar Cliff

Leo Edison Creech, 94, passed away Wednesday, June 21, 2017.  The family and community have lost another member of the “Greatest Generation” and he will be truly missed.  He was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 66 years, Myra Dale Creech. Leo was born Oct. 10, 1922 in Columbus County, to Walter Jackson Creech and Ethel Creech.
Growing up in a community ravaged by the depression, Leo struggled to obtain an 8th grade education due to economic hardship before signing up with the Civilian Conservation Corps at age 16 where he was sent to California to work on re-forestation projects and forest fire patrol.  A stint as a welder on the “Liberty” ships in the Wilmington dockyards was followed by enlistment in the U.S. Army in 1943 serving in the Pacific theater during World War II.  He continued his military career in U.S. Army Engineer Battalions through the Korean and Vietnam Wars until his retirement from active duty in 1968, having served our country for 26 years active duty and four years inactive reserves.  He attained the rank of Command Sergeant Major, the highest of all enlisted ranks, receiving numerous military commendations and awards.

After his military retirement, Leo continued his education through correspondence courses as well as being awarded an Associate’s Degree in Electronics Engineering Technology from the Technical Institute of Alamance having obtained his GED while on active duty.  He was known in the community as the go to person for television and electronic repair as well as a Volkswagen expert.  He worked on his “gentleman’s” farm raising Angus beef cattle, participating as Lay Leader for the Cedar Cliff United Methodist Church and was a member of the Thomas M. Holt Lodge 492 AF & A.M. where he was past master.  He was particularly well known for his skill at Masonic funerals reciting the entire rite from memory.
In a life well lived, Leo had a myriad of experiences from world travel with the military in both war and peacetime, working on Shrimp and Tug boats in the Florida Gulf, Zinc mining in Oklahoma and obtaining a pilot license while stationed in Alaska. Along this journey he met and married his life partner, Myra in 1950.  His love of travel and celebration of cultural diversity was shared with Myra making all visitors to their home feel welcome regardless of their racial heritage or background.
Known by his children for his military style of parenting from duty rosters to “ask the First Sergeant” (Myra), in his later years his grand and great-grandchildren knew him to be a kind, gracious and loving grandfather. Throughout all his life roles Leo was known for his integrity, honesty, dedication to God, country, and family and his determination to succeed.
Visitation will be held at from 5-7 p.m. Saturday, June 24 at Rich and Thompson Funeral Home in Graham.  A military and masonic celebration of Leo’s life will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, June 25 at Cedar Cliff United Methodist Church.
Leo is survived by five children, Schotsi AndreaLee Creech Ellington (Michael Ellington) and Alan Dale Creech (Darlene Kime Creech), both of Graham, Walter Jay Creech (Ann Dismuke Creech) of Saxapahaw, Elizabeth Creech Deterding (James Deterding) of Summerfield, Renata Creech Tripp of Denton; 11 grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to The Masonic Home for Children at Oxford 500 College Street, Oxford, N.C.  27565.
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