Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Morris, Leavis Corene (Henthorne)

Leavis Corene Henthorne Morris, who never saw a flower she didn't want to plant a cutting from in her yard, died last Saturday, September 19, 2009, at Ollie Steele Burden Manor, Baton Rouge, [LA].

Born in Bauxite, Arkansas on June 28, 1927, the fifth of thirteen children of Lillian Maude Fowler Henthorne and Samuel Glover Henthorne, she spent her childhood on the family farm in Valliant, Oklahoma. She worked the land alongside her father and attended Lone Star School, a schoolhouse he built on the family property. While working as a "Rosie the Riveter" during WWII at an Arkansas defense plant building detonators, she met her future husband on a sidewalk in Little Rock. It was love at first sight. She married Andrew George "Sam" Morris in Oklahoma City on May 28, 1946. In 1957, with 3 children in tow, they loaded their possessions on a cattle truck in Waco, Texas, and moved to Baton Rouge to fulfill the promise of a brighter future.

Stubborn and resourceful, whether learning as a young woman to drive the car while her husband slept, fighting breast cancer for 22 years, or carrying a hacksaw in her walker (for those pesky gardening emergencies), she approached life with gusto. No matter what you did for her she'd say, "That's the best I ever had!" She read her newspaper from cover to cover and when she didn't know how to do something, she headed to the library to check out a book about it.

She loved her five children unconditionally. If you knew her, you surely knew all about their accomplishments too. To her children she gave her tenacity and strength (and the ability to move the occasional mountain). Her crystal blue eyes and bright personality brought sunshine to friends and family. She loved to sing (You Are My Sunshine was her favorite), and when life threw something difficult her way she'd say, "We don't get to decide. God decides."

Mrs. Morris was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, her son Samuel Ray Morris, brothers Roscoe Nathaniel, Lawrence Mancel, Samuel Glover II, Edward Fowler, Junior (stillborn), Elijah and Clarence Ray Henthorne, and sisters Okema Beatrice Henthorne Luna and Mary Elizabeth Henthorne Nowell.

Survivors, also known as the 'Krewe of Leavis', include daughter Georgia Morris Walker and husband Jimmy, Sunshine; daughter-in-law Shannon Morris, Tampa, Florida; daughter Kay Morris Miller and husband Ivan, Englewood, New Jersey; daughter Elizabeth Morris Fisher and husband Alan, Baton Rouge; daughter Rae Lyn Morris and partner Kelli Patin, Port Allen; grandchildren Shane, Jason and Ashlea Walker, Beau Morris, Terri Kirkland, Ben Miller; eleven great grandchildren; sister Dorcas Jane "Dot" Henthorne Unruh and husband Ken, Bloomburg, Texas; brother Paul Henthorne, Idabel, Oklahoma; and sister Maudie Pearl Henthorne, Norman, Oklahoma.

Written and shared by her daughter: Elizabeth (Morris) Fisher

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