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Leewood Bates Woodell

January 9, 1941 May 18, 2022
Leewood Bates Woodell
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Obituary for Leewood Bates Woodell
Leewood Bates Woodell of Houston, Texas, was born January 1941 and passed away Wednesday, May 18, 2022. Leewood was born in Quincy, FL, to Jessie S. and Mortimer B. Bates Jr. After graduating from Quincy High School in 1959, she went on to study history at Agnes Scott College and Emory University. During college Leewood joined the Alpha Delta Pi Sorority. She loved her years in Atlanta and frequently attended parties where James Brown performed live. Leewood was a very active alumni for both schools for many years. She was also a passionate college football fan and loved both the Florida Gators and FSU Seminoles.

Leewood taught elementary school for several years in Orlando, FL, where she met Tom Woodell. She and Tom married in 1969 and moved to Houston where they began their family. Tom and Leewood brought three daughters into the world, Blair, Amy, and Sallie. Leewood put all her energy into her family, whether it was making from-scratch cookies, Girl Scout camping trips, or driving the kids to and from their many after school activities.

Leewood was also a very active community member. She was an active fundraiser for St. Francis School, Hunters Creek Elementary, Spring Branch Middle School and Memorial High School. She served as PTA President twice. She was very involved with the Houston Museum of Natural Science, and served on the Board of Directors. She was very proud to help HMNS grow into one of the top visited museums in the U.S. Leewood encouraged her girls to become involved in community service; subsequently, she helped form and lead Houston’s first chapter of the mother daughter organization the National Charity League.

When Leewood wasn’t volunteering, she and Tom enjoyed playing tennis and socializing at the Forest Club. She loved to travel and achieved her goal of visiting all seven continents. Later on Leewood & Tom would become enthusiastic skiers. They would join their friends all over Colorado, Wyoming and Canada.

Leewood enjoyed escaping Houston’s hot summers by going to their house in Arrowhead, Colorado. Her adventurous spirit took her skiing, rafting, fly fishing, and on overnight horseback expeditions. One of Leewood’s favorite activities in Colorado was attending the outdoor Bravo Concert Series in July each year. While in Colorado, Leewood and Tom also enjoyed volunteering at Round Up River Ranch, a camp for children and teens with life threatening illnesses.

Staying connected to friends and family brought Leewood so much joy. Leewood was a very loyal and caring friend and would go to great lengths to show her friends love and support. She would travel near and far to attend parties and visit with friends and relatives. Leewood’s small town, Southern upbringing helped her develop into a great storyteller. Her children and grandchildren loved hearing about her mischievous childhood and travel misadventures.

Leewood was predeceased by her parents Jessie S. and Mort Bates Jr. She is survived by her husband Tom; daughters Blair (Henry), Amy( Sean) and Sallie(Carol); grandchildren Madeline, Max, Dylan and Caroline; brothers Mort III and Richard and sister-in-law Jan. A Houston service was held May 26, 2022 at 3:00 PM at Chapelwood United Methodist Church with a reception following at the Forest Club.

A graveside service will be held in Quincy on June17, 2022 at10:00 AM at Hillcrest Cemetery, 600 N.14th Street, Quincy, FL., 32351. A reception will immediately follow at the home of Dick and Jan Bates, 329 N. Jackson St., Quincy.

A celebration of life will be held in Edwards, Colorado sometime in July.

In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to one of these organizations that meant so much to Leewood. Texas Children’s Hospital (,Round Up River Ranch ( or Gadsden Arts Center (

Charles McClellan Funeral Home, 15 S. Jackson St., Quincy, Florida, 850-627-7677, is assisting the family with arrangements.

Leewood's obituary may be accessed in the Houston Chronicle at
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