Marilyn Jean Leafdale (age 81) died peacefully in her sleep early Sunday morning, December 20, 2020, in Mesa, Arizona. She died of colon cancer, after receiving Memory and Hospice Care at Brookdale North Mesa. She was born in Kimball, Nebraska, November 15, 1939. She is survived by her brother, Keith L. Leafdale of Auburn, California, a nephew, Kevin Salger in Long Beach, CA, two nieces, Laura Sy in Cool, CA, and Debra Grady, in Whiting, NJ, and by many first cousins, and many in the next generation, in a dozen states.
She was preceded in death by her parents, C. Edgar Leafdale (1991), Inez L. Leafdale (1975) and sister Amber Cook (1993). Marilyn graduated with the Mesa High School class of 1956; she held three academic degrees, two Baccalaureates and one Masters, from Arizona State University. With degrees in art as well in business management, she received recognition for managing the restoration and re-purposing of the high rise Pioneer Hotel in Tucson, following damage by fire in1970. That led to a specialty in real estate property management, which she followed in both CA and AZ. Marilyn enjoyed quilting and restoration of old family quilts, multiple art forms including graphics and photography. Her work was published in the book We Walk in Sandy Places, co-authored with Byrd Baylor, featuring Marilyn's photos of tracks of insects and small creatures on Arizona's desert sands. Cremation was arranged at Regency Mortuary in Sun City, per Marilyn's wishes. No memorial or funeral service has been planned during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Marilyn would be pleased with any contributions that are made in her memory to the scholarship programs at Arizona State (Link listed below).