ROBERT "DEAN" LEGGETT, JR. ~ Class of 1970
February 21, 1952 - November 11, 2009
Dean, son of Robert and Lillian Leggett, passed away peacefully on November 11, 2009 after an extended battle with cancer.
His 57 years started in Columbus, Ohio, moved with his family to Pittsburgh and after 7 years moved to Richland, where he graduated from Columbia High in 1970. Dean was a very talented musician and started piano lessons at an early age. From Jr. High on his interests centered on music and he participated in a number of bands throughout high school. He purchased his first organ in his teens by cleaning a local drug store. He also used his organ playing skills during Sunday school services at Trinity UP Church (now Shalom) in Richland where he was confirmed.
After high school he continued his education by attending Central Washington University where he studied music education, getting his BS Ed in 1974. During this time, his then current band was chosen to play at Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. a favorite memory of Dean's.
After graduation, he taught music at Clallam Bay, WA for a year where he formed a life-long friendship with the principal and his wife. He then moved to Seattle where he pursued a career in music entertainment. He played piano, organ, sax and flute in many hotel lounges and clubs over a period of 20 years. He also played at weddings, including those of two of his siblings.
For the last 10 years he has been retired due to ill health. Dean never married, but enjoyed the company of his beloved black lab, Tonka, and several long lived cats, among them Skeexix and Ivan. He had a deep love of books and was a voracious reader. He was also an avid collector of match box cars, numbering into the thousands.
The family wishes to extended special thanks to Dr. Ronald Singler of Highline Hospital in Burien for his loving care and friendship to Dean over the years and throughout his bout of cancer. He visited Dean numerous times in his home and was at his bedside in the nursing home as he passed away.
Dean is survived by his parents and five siblings: Mark (Nancy), John (Rose), Beth Bailey (Kevin), Benjamin (Kari) and Matthew (Carolyn), and nine nieces and Andrew and Isaac (Matthew) and his uncle Bud Simpson (Lois Jean) He was preceded in death by his grandparents: William Joshua Leggett and Frances LeMasters Leggett, Oscar Virgil Simpson and Lillian Jones Simpson and his uncle Ernest William Leggett (Esther).
Memorial Services will be held Saturday, November 21st at 2pm at West Side UP Church in Richland. Memorials may be sent to Swedish Cancer Institute, 16233 Sylvester Rd SW, Suite 120, Burien, WA 98166-3044.