Saying goodbye to Rev. Leo
Pastor Leo Anderson, age 71, passed away Sunday, Dec. 18, from complications with pneumonia. Rev. Leo was a longtime friend and the last person I would have thought wouldn’t make it through the month of December. He was a charter member of the Wednesday Lunch Bunch, a group meeting he enjoyed and seldom missed. He served as chaplain of the Bunch starting off each meeting with a prayer. At the last gathering he attended he showed no signs of being ill. He developed a head cold, then it went to his chest and in a few days he was admitted to the hospital and put on a ventilator. He never responded and was taken off of life support Sunday.
Rev. enjoyed telling stories, many on himself and his experiences on the road and the tough times he faced as a young preacher. He told that he put on a necktie at age 14 to begin preaching and had not removed it in public since. He liked to tell about he and wife, Ivalyn, once preaching in Arkansas as evangelists receiving, at the end of the week, only $14.50 in the offering. The host pastor pitched in 50 cents to make it an even $15. That was just enough to make it home to Orange.
He and Ms. Ivalyn were always available to minister to the sick, prisoners and downtrodden.
Mrs. Anderson has been in bad health and she was Rev. Leo’s main concern. He cared and loved her very much. He always said he married above himself. Together they had three boys.
Friends will be telling Leo stories for many years. Judge Claude Wimberly and Judge James Stringer are loaded with stories. Leo always made fun of himself but he was proud to be from the Cove and often named dropped about the youngsters raised in that part of Orange, Judge Joe Parkhurst, Judge Janice Menard, Tucker Clayton, the Harmon boys, etc. Rev. Leo and I performed several funeral services together. He played it straight and I performed.
He often referred to he and David Peck doing my service and having the last word. I’ve been asked to speak at his funeral. I kidded Rev. a lot but the one thing I couldn’t do was embarrass him. He was comfortable in his skin. A good man of God. Goodbye my friend. Please see obit.