LeRoy Gene Mahnke, longtime Ponca City resident, died Friday, December 22, 2018 at Via Christi Village/Ascension Living. A private family graveside will be held at Resthaven Cemetery on Friday, December 28, 2018 with Pastor Brian Taylor officiating. Taylor, grandson of the deceased, is the pastor of Forest Avenue Baptist Church of Sherman, TX. Interment will be under the direction of Grace Memorial Chapel in Ponca City, OK.
LeRoy was born May 12, 1927, the son of Arthur and Grace Mahnke. He attended schools in Ponca City, and graduated from Ponca City High School in 1945. LeRoy enlisted in the United States Naval Service on March 23, 1945, beginning active duty on May 17, 1945. He served on a navy ship along the Pacific coast of California during WWII, and served his country until his honorable discharge on July 16, 1946.
LeRoy married Dorothy "Dot" Mae Hume in his parents' home on August 12, 1947. They established their first home in Ponca City. Dorothy was a homemaker after their daughter Diana Sue was born in 1948, and their second daughter Shannon Lea was born in 1965. Laughter was always a part of his large family gatherings. LeRoy and his brother Art Mahnke shared a great sense of humor and enjoyed swapping jokes. The brothers along with their father loved watching baseball. The Mahnke family's life was centered around family and faith.
LeRoy and Dot were active members of the First Church of God in Ponca City where they both served on various boards and committees. LeRoy was a church usher and enjoyed welcoming people on Sunday mornings.
LeRoy was employed at Conoco Inc. in Ponca City for over 38 years. During his career, he worked in aviation and geophysics departments as well as assigned as a "doodlebugger" in a West Texas exploration field office. He had a passion for photography, and years later he became a camera operator in Geophysics. His work was tedious... long days bent over a large camera and countless hours in a dark room developing maps of the world's oil reserves. He often told people he knew where all the oil in the world was located. LeRoy was extremely proud to be a Conoco employee, and he missed his work after he retired from Conoco in 1984 under the early retirement option (ERO).
LeRoy and Dot enjoyed various hobbies which included raising registered Toy Fox Terriors, home projects, gardening, birdwatching, as well as camping trips in Colorado.
LeRoy is survived by his daughters, Diana Taylor of Gladewater, Texas, and Shannon Mair of Oklahoma City; one grandson, Pastor Brian Taylor and wife, Sarah of Sherman, Texas; three granddaughters, Brooke Litton of Gladewater, Texas; Sarah Bryan and husband, Joshua of Edmond, and Rebekah Edwards and husband, Dylan of Crestview, Florida; five great-granddaughters, Macey Melvin; Gabby, Lily, Annie, and Laura Taylor; and Emma Mae Edwards; five great-grandsons, Hudson Taylor; James and Logan Edwards; and Benjamin and William Bryan.
He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Dorothy, one brother Art Mahnke, and four sisters Phyline Mahnke Flynn, Geraldine Mahnke McAlister, Louise Mahnke Moody and Virginia Bowen.