Leila Jeanette Pettis
August 5, 1935 – December 28, 2019
Leila Jeanette Blocker Pettis, 84, died December 28, 2019. Born in Andalusia, AL, grew up in Ocoee, FL, raised her children in Orlando, lived in Bessemer City, NC and mostly recently resided in Sun City Center, FL which is where she passed away. She will be laid to rest in the Chapel Hill Cemetery in Orlando, FL where a private burial service will be held in her honor.
She was predeceased by spouse Robert E. Pettis and son, John “Randy” Pettis. Survived by Daughters: Leila Gail Gormly (Daniel Gormly), Wanda Marie McDonald (David McDonald), Michelle Diane Pettis (Allan Brown) and daughter-in-law, Cheryl Ann Pettis. Sister: Lindal W. Rutherford. Grandchildren: Krissy McDaniel (Christopher McDaniel), Dawn Witherington (Lee Witherington), Michael Gormly (Stefanie Gormly), Shawna Mills (Daniel Mills), Robbie McDonald (LauraLee McDonald), and Brendan Pettis (Caroline Pettis). Great-Grandchildren: Elizabeth McDaniel, Chloe Prescott (Blake Prescott), Harley McDaniel, Mimi McDonald, Miyah Mills, Grayson McDaniel, Stella Mills, Emily McDaniel, Jakeb Witherington, and Addison Pettis. Great-Great-Grandchildren: Landon McDaniel, Lucas McDaniel, and Briar Rose Prescott.
Although most of her life was spent as a full time Mother, Jeanette retired from the Girl Scouts Citrus Council. She was an active member of several of the Baptist ministries in Orlando, earned extra income by sewing and ironing clothes for others, and was a kind, compassionate Mother, Grandmother and friend. She loved gospel music and enjoyed singing along and tapping her foot to the rhythm. When raising her children she taught them to be respectful, love her Lord and Savior, and do their best at all they did. Her greatest joy was touching, holding and rocking each of her grand and great grand children. As she would look down on their tiny faces you could see the enormous love she felt for each of them. If you watch carefully, you will notice they reflect her smile and have just a small twinkle in their eyes which she left behind for each of us.
In our grief, she would want each of us to know that she is the soft star that shines at night. She doesn’t want us to stand at her grave and cry, for she is not there, she did not die. Rather we should be pleased, as to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.
In lieu of flowers, please feel free to make a donation in her name to www.stjude.org/donate.
Leila Jeanette Pettis
January 3, 2020
Mom Pettis was a special person to me during my younger years as her daughter, Gail, was my best friend. We still kept in touch over the years. Prayers for her daughters and all of her family.