Leita Merle Plate

December 27, 1937April 26, 2018

Leita Merle Plate, 80, of Jefferson City, Missouri, went to her new heavenly home on April 26, Memorial services will be 3 pm on Saturday, May 19, 2018 in the beautiful chapel at Heisinger Bluffs in Jefferson City, Mo. Leita was born on December 27, 1937, She came from a very large family and grew up with 9 brothers and sisters, Her parents were Robert and Berniece Springer. Leita married and had 4 children who she raised partly in Southern California and Springfield, Mo. Leita was more then just a pretty face, she was ingenious at achieving what always seemed to be the impossible. Faced with many obstacles, along with limited resources she would take empty deserted buildings and turn them into Beauty Salons, when she was told it couldn't be done it only strengthen her resolve. If she did not know how to do something she would figure it out as obstacles presented themselves. To her, adversity was merely the product of invention, which was pretty much how she approached life in general. Leita later had to sell her shops in Springfield and retire, she and her husband Allen Plate moved to the country in Fulton, Missouri. She mainly found her peace in gardening, site seeing, music and finding strength through prayer. She also loved to Travel. Her hobbies included painting and sketching. The walls of her room were decorated with paintings that she had done, She loved being with family, and found solace in just enjoying nature. She maintain a wonderful sense of humor and love of God that helped her through the hard times. Her blue violet eyes shined with an unending effervescence that reflected her energetic spirit of creativity and love for life. She always tried to live each day to the fullest, was kind, caring and giving to those around her and could never pass a flowering plant or bush without commenting on how beautiful nature is and often spoke of Gods love for us. She was a loving and affectionate mother and will be sorely missed. Leita is survived by two daughters, Donna (Bob) Leppold, Cynthia Lowe, one son, Donald Cox, one brother, Noble (Mary) Springer, and one sister, Mary Kauf, nine grandchildren; Victoria, Alan, David, Jesse, Millie, Tim, Jeff, Tyler, Ryan and eight great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. Leita was preceded in death by her husband, Allen Plate, son, David Cox, parents, Robert and Berniece Springer, her brothers, Bob, Jim, Dean, Gerald, Bill and two sisters, Shirley and Donna.

This is a poem that was written in her own handwriting and found in her room beside her bed. “God saw me getting tired and surgery was not to be, so he wrapped his arms around me until I was peaceful and serene. So if you see me sleeping, so deeply and free from pain, I do not wish to be awaken and suffer like that again. I have come to the end of my journey and traveled my last weary mile. Forget if you can that I ever frown and remember only the smiles. Forget unkind words that I have spoken and remember some good that I have done. Remember I have fought some hard battles that I won by the end of each day and don't begrudge me leaving and wish only for me to stay. With tear filled eyes you watched me suffer and saw me fade away. Please don't grieve for my leaving I don't want you sad in anyway. Dry your tear. It's over, and I will be waiting for you to arrive someday”.


  • Donna (Bob) Leppold, Daughter
  • Cynthia Lowe, Daughter
  • Donald Cox, Son
  • Noble (Mary) Springer, Brother
  • Mary Kauf, Sister
  • Leita is also survived by nine grandchildren; Victoria, Alan, David, Jesse, Millie, Tim, Jeff, Tyler, Ryan and eight great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

    Leita was preceded in death by her parents, Robert and Berniece Springer, her husband, Alan Plate, son David Cox, her brothers; Bob, Jim, Dean, Gerald, Bill and two sisters, Shirley and Donna.


  • Memorial Service Saturday, May 19, 2018

Leita Merle Plate

have a memory or condolence to add?

Donna Leppold

May 8, 2018

My dear mama raised 4 kids mainly by herself, but she always seem to find time to stop what she was doing and play with us, help us ride a bike, answer a question, help us with our homework. My mother would get up in the morning and always... made sure we had a big breakfast, before we headed to school. I have so many memories of fun with my mama that I will cherish forever. I love you mama

Bob Leppold

May 7, 2018

I am heart broken with the loss of the best mother-in-law a man could ever wish for. She accepted me as her son with no reservations and showed me unconditional love like I've never known in my life. Living so many miles apart we didn't get to spend as much time together as I would have liked to but the times we did share were very memorable. I especially cherish the times we took her up to Cripple Creek in Colorado, our weekend in Durango, CO and the Durango-Silverton train ride, the many happy birthday messages she'd sing to me, teaching her fly casting (great pupil) and most of all her hugs. Love you so much Mom. I will miss you. I hope you will be there waiting for me on the day I cross over too.

Donna Leppold

May 4, 2018

I love my mother so much and I would often write her poems. One mother's day, when I was a teenager, I wrote her the following poem to express my love and gratitude to her. I miss her so much my heart aches deep inside.
My Mother is a beautiful diamond; and I am but a rough stone, She and Jesus have tried to smooth my edges although her life has been alone. Mothers are a rare and precious thing, that never should be abused; the love they give their children, and comfort when they are confused. Now that diamond needs to be shined and cherished, so that it will glow forever. I will try to do good and cherish this gem because without it I will crumble inside.

They say a mother understands what a child does not say, although it would surely make their day, if we said "I love you" in every way. I love and miss you mama. So very much.

Sandi Helton

May 4, 2018

Leita and my mom shared a room at Heisinger. She was such a beautiful and interesting lady. My mom thought she was a “movie star”. We are blessed to have known her. Even though my mom could be confused or difficult at times, Leita was always wanting to lend a helping hand and looking out for her. She will be missed. Rest In Peace. Thoughts and prayers to the family. Take care, Sandi Helton.

Lori Baumhoer

May 2, 2018

I knew Leita less than a year and in those months we became very well acquainted. We discussed music, drawing, paintings, and staying positive. One of my favorite memories was going to the Cork and Canvas with her and painting together. She would watch as I added features to my painting and I would watch her picture develop into something truly one of a kind. Leita always paid people compliments and would share inspirational comments to others. Leita was a leader and friend to many and I am happy I got to know her. Thank you for sharing her with us and she will be missed. I'll be keeping family in my prayers.

Tyler Cox

May 2, 2018

My Dear Grandma I'll miss and love you dearly. Growing up as a kid I had so many memories from the little photo shoots with bandannas with the guns to fishing with you and grandpa. I had a lot of memories that I will cherish till the day I see you again. You lived a long life and you had a good one too. Anyways Grandma till we meet again. You loving Grandson
Tyler Warren Cox

Howie Bagley

May 2, 2018

Captain's Ball, Panama Canal 2016

Don Cox

May 2, 2018

You were loved by many from the love you shown others. A very beautiful woman all the way around, inside out! your strength was admirable beyond belief.. I love you MOM

Cynthia lowe

May 2, 2018

Mother was the rock we all clung to when life got stormy. She was our security and was always there for us when we needed her with a ready made hug and kiss to mend whatever bothered us, or even to show us how to ride a bike for the first time.

Howard Bagley

May 2, 2018

Turning empty buildings into hair salons was one of the biggest impressions I had of Leita.  When we were on cruises sitting around the dining table, I would always call attention to the other 6 or 8 strangers at the table that Leita was THE LEITA, the well known celebrity beautician from Missouri.  Leita always seemed to enjoy that honor of being a special person on board the cruise ship.  Each lunch and dinner, we sat with more strangers and I would tell them about the special person sitting there with them.

Another memory I had was she constantly surprising me, by leaving little notes written on small pieces of colored paper with butterflies on them.  She would hide the notes everywhere, such as in my shoe or under a dinner napkin.  The notes were well written, poetic, and with honest emotion.  I'm still finding new notes in places I least expect.  I have saved them all.

And then, there was Leita's smile.  What a warm and friendly smile.  You knew immediately she was the one!

Leita and I talked on the phone sometimes for hours.  Normally, I'm a very quiet person and rarely open my mouth, but boy, she could get me talking.  We had a long distance relationship but the phone calls blew away the miles and we were together, happily chatting away. 

I can take what she wrote in that poem and read a lot into it.  Leita, oh Leita, what a class act!  Thanks for the opportunity and honor of getting to know you and being part of your life.