Leana Marie Droz Wheeler, Age 94 of Fort Scott, KS, passed away July 8, 2022, at 6:30pm a peaceful death with her children at her side the day before. Leana was known as Mom, Grandma, Great Grandma, Aunt, Cousin, Friend, Leana Banana and the Virgin Mary.
Leana was born December 15, 1927, to parents Ralph and Anna Droz at the family home in Bates County, MO. Leana completed her elementary, Jr. High and High School education at Rich Hill, MO. After High School she joined the Cadet Nursing Corps at the Mercy School of Nursing in Fort Scott, KS where she received a degree in Nursing.
She was even featured in a booklet published for Mercy Hospital and has worked at hospitals in Fort Scott, KS, Clinton, MO, and Butler, MO serving and caring for countless people throughout the years. Leana also partnered with her husband Hank when they owned and operated three drive-in restaurants. When Leana retired from Nursing, she worked at Wal-Mart in Butler greeting customers, stocking shelves and about anything else they asked her to do.
She was married on August 31, 1947 to Henry H. Wheeler of Rich Hill, MO. They were married at St. Bridget’s Catholic Church on one of the hottest days of that year. Leana and Hank were married 69 years before he preceded her in death in 2016. To this union of marriage, they had four children; Sylvia Newman (spouse-Richard) of Tonganoxie, KS; Richard Wheeler (spouse-Pat) of Fort Scott, KS; Vicki Elmore (spouse-Craig) of Leawood, KS, and Doug Wheeler (spouse-Donna) of Fort Scott, KS. She also was a cherished Grandmother, friend and mentor to her many Grandchildren and Great-Grandchildren. Leana was a caring person to everyone she met.
She loved to collect recipes, crystal, Nativity sets, Longaberger baskets, hanging clothes on the backyard clothesline, entertaining, cooking and saving or displaying anything her grandchildren made for her or gave to her. Leana was a very spiritual woman and served in the Catholic Churches as a Eucharist Minister, in fact, she even laundered the Priest’s clothing. Leana was a skilled fly swatter. She had numerous fly swatters in her collection. She could kill a fly with one quick stroke no matter where the fly landed, she swatted it. Leana was famous for her tenderloin sandwiches, macaroni and cheese, homemade ice cream (and she loved ice cream), canned vegetables, pickles, and strawberry jam. Leana loved flowers and gardening.
She could revive any dead plant to a botanical wonder, she was known for her African violets. Leana was an avid Kansas City Royals fan and attended many baseball, basketball, and football games of her children/grandchildren, cheering them on. Leana acquired many friends throughout the years in the states of Missouri and Kansas, resulting from moving many times for her husband’s job with Peabody Coal Company.
She even made friends with the moving company that moved them several times. Leana loved family and family gatherings for Birthdays, Christmas, 4th of July, and just dropping by her home for a visit; she always insisted you stay for a meal. She would cook a meal that would make Julia Child and Betty Crocker jealous, and it was required that you always take food home with you.
When it came to cooking for her grandchildren, she cooked whatever they wanted to eat, no matter what she was fixing for a meal. She also passed on her love for cooking to her children and grandchildren. Leana and Hank loved eating out, as well as dancing/music and meeting friends.
Three of their favorite places were Chicken Annie’s in Pittsburg, KS, Ararat Shrine Temple in Kansas City, MO and Chinese Chef in Nevada, MO. Leana was preceded in death by her parents, Ralph and Anna Droz, Husband, Henry “Hank” Wheeler, and Francine Droz- Sister. She is survived by her sister Wilma Miller, and brother Frank Droz, Children, Grandchildren and Great Grandchildren. Mom, Grandma Leana, Sister, Aunt, Friend - you will remain in our hearts and minds forever and look forward to the day that you Welcome us to your Heavenly Home.
Your Children-Thank God that you gave us ‘life’, so that we could give it to your grandchildren and great grandchildren. You instilled in us what it means to love God and love others, care for others, give to others, work hard, and appreciate all we have been given. “Well done, Good and Faithful MOM”.
Mass of Christian Burial will be 11 am Saturday, July 23, 2022 at St Bridget Catholic Church, Rich Hill, Missouri. Burial will be in Green Lawn Cemetery. The Rosary will be prayed at 10:30 am prior to the Mass. Online condolences can be left at www.heuserfunerals.com.