Walt Leonard

Profile Updated: February 4, 2010
Residing In: Dallas, TX
Occupation: Operations Supervisor / SOUTHWEST AIRLINES
Children: DAUGHTER: Raye Marie Leonard born July 9,1994
Comments:

First off, let me say thank you Kathy for finding me at Love Field and getting me to this website.
Okay, here goes....
After graduating from Southeastern I took a teaching and coaching job in Denison, Tx. I taught High School Biology and Chemistry and was the Linebacker coach on the Varsity Team. I spent four wonderful years there before moving with my Head Coach to Waxahachie, Tx and assuming the same responsibilities with the addition of Varsity Girls basketball which hadn't had a program for about 8 years. What a challenge it was, but we did pretty well and even better when we went 5 on 5 like the boys. I also coached tennis (go figure). Some of my greatest joys in Waxahachie were coaching some NFL future players. Brodrick Sargent (fullback for the Dallas Cowboys), Walter Gentry (reciever for New York Giants) both have long since retired but still hear from them every now and then.
After Waxachie (4 years) my head coach went to Baylor to coach under Grant Taft. I moved on to Duncanville High School for another 4 years coaching linebackers and teaching Biology. After 12 years in the education and coaching realm, I decided to quit the madhouse (putting your job on the line every Friday night on the shoulders of a 16 or 17 year old) and make a change.
I had coached a young man who's father was in the Oil and Gas industry. I joined him and his staff selling partnerships. Four years later with money in the bank, the market fell hard and we basically shut the doors and closed camp.
I took what money I had, gathered some friends of mine made in the Oil and Gas and went into recycling Plastics. If you remember, it was a hot item for a few years with all the landfill issues. I put all the equipment in and we were in business. We did quite well and I eventually sold the business, ( with a profit ) joined a group out of Arlington and started compounding plastics for end users. One of our biggest markets was China. Their government loaned money to small groups to make items that eventually got back here to the good ole U.S.A.
One of our biggest users was in California making drainpipe to be used instead of our PVC pipe. Things were going well until the State of California stopped paying their bills do to the bad leadership. It was a trickle effect and it finally caught up to us, so we closed our doors.
I remarried and moved to Oklahoma City and landed a job with SOUTHWEST AIRLINES, where I've been for almost 18 years. I've held several positions with them from Operations Agent (load planner) to Instructor and then back to an Operations Supervisor which I remain.
My health took a down slide in 2001 when I was diagnoised with AML a form of Leukemia. I spent 6 months in the hospital before they could get it into remission. Now divorced, I eventually made a recovery until 2004 when my cancer returned. I went to the donor pool and out of 5.4 million possibilities, I found "one" that was perfect for a transplant. In August, my blood was reborn and since have been clean. They say 10 years you are considered cured. I'll keep my fingers crossed on that one.
One of the side affects of transplants is what they call Graft vs. Host. Every one that has one of these reacts differently. Mine was no exception.
A little over a year ago, I had a blood clot in my left calf. They cured the clot but by foot still remained swollen and my toes were dying. After the top of my foot had rotted off, two toes removed they figured out what happened. My immune system thought that the clot was an infection and started to kill all the tissue around my clot area thus killing everything below it. A fter 22 weeks in the hospital trying to regrow new tissue, I'd had it! I made the decision to have them remove my lower left leg.
I'im doing okay now, but still have issues on a day to day moment.
I still play tennis, walk about 2 miles a day and still enjoy my job. I'll give it two more years and then I'm moving back to Hugo to hunt, fish and try and stay out of trouble.
My daughter is 15 yrs old now and will graduate in the same time.
Well, that 's me in a nutshell. If you read thru all that, thank you. I'm not crying because I'm a cripple, it's just the hand that's been dealt. I'm still vertical and loving everyday more than ever.

School Story:

I guess one of my most memorable time was when I turned 16. I turned on a Wednesday and Saturday I was going to get my DL.
Steve Stamper and I always went to eat before our Friday night ballgame. This week we were playing Atoka at home.
As you might remember, I got my knee torn up and had to go to OKC to have it put back together again. Needless to say, it was three months later before I got my license and had to take it driving with my left foot and my right leg in a full cast in the Trooper's lap doing my driving test. I had daylight driving only and automatic transmission only as restrictions.
My first date was with Sara Shull (Payne). All we did was drive up and down Jackson street. Best I can remember we didn't even go parking! ha ha ha

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It's Walt Leonard's birthday today.
Sep
20
Sep 20, 2017 at 3:33 AM
It's Walt Leonard's birthday today.
Sep 20, 2016 at 3:33 AM
It's Walt Leonard's birthday today.
Sep 20, 2015 at 3:33 AM
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Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:57 PM
January 31, 2010...I generally don't work in this area of Love Field...Kathy had never flown Southwest Airlines...she had a layover and was just "people-watching" while she waited.
We last saw each other in 1968ish...42 years ago.
Amazing !