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Surnames: Cox, Spackman, Worth, Thornock
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Idaho State Journal, 08/13/08
TUCSON, Ariz. - Leo Cox, 82, of Tucson, Ariz., and Garden City, Utah, passed away
peacefullyfollowing a two-month illness on Saturday, August 9, 2008, in Tucson, in the
care and comfort of his dearly beloved wife of 58 years, Shirley Mae Thornock Cox.
Leo is survived by his wife, Shirley, and his children and grandchildren: son, Steven
M. Cox (partner Tung K. Dinh), of Seattle; son, Jeffrey L. Cox (wife, Karen, and children,
Tyler W. and Spencer T.), of Port Orchard, Wash.; and daughter, Janet E. Toy (husband,
David K. Toy, and children, Alex G. Witzel, Annaliese W. Gardner (husband, Chet), and
Elizabeth R. Dimmitt and stepchildren Halden A. Toy, Kyle D. Toy, and Daniel K. Toy), of
Marysville, Wash. Preceding Leo in death were his mother, Iva Spackman Worth Cox, and
father, George Cox, and Leo's brothers and sister, Carl F. Worth, Beryl Worth Stark,
Garr Worth, Grant Worth and infant Dow Worth.
Leo was born August 8, 1926, in Logan, Utah, the grandson of LDS pioneer Brigham
Spackman. Following his mother's death when he was 6 years old, Leo lived for two
years in Bancroft, Idaho, with his Uncle Fred and Aunt LaVira Jeppesen. Leo then lived
with his brother, Carl Worth, and his wife, Nita, who raised Leo in Pocatello, Idaho.
After attending the Idaho State University vocational welding school, Leo at age 16
began work at shipyards in Portland, Ore., and Tacoma, Wash. At 18, Leo was an Army
paratrooper and served as an M.P. in Japan during the occupation.
In 1946, Leo returned to Pocatello, worked as a plumberpipefitter and courted Shirley
Mae Thornock, the love of his life. Married in 1950, Leo and Shirley raised their children
in Pocatello, Bettendorf, Iowa, and Rock Springs, Wyo. Leo was a union plumber-pipefitter
and instrument technician, working on numerous construction jobs and power plants, and
wife Shirley taught school. Following their retirements, Leo and Shirley split time
between their Tucson and Garden City (Bear Lake), Utah, residences.
Leo worked hard and played hard, with a motto, "Hurry up and have fun!" Leo
took great joy in camping, fishing, boating, water-skiing, snow skiing and snowmobiling
with his family. During his 20-year retirement, Leo began a prolific woodworking hobby and
business, Heirloom Oak.
Leo was a "larger than life" man, with great charisma and strength of
character. Children adored him, women admired him, and men respected him. Leo and his
wife, Shirley, bonded so deeply they called themselves "Shirleo."
Acutely intelligent and deeply spiritual, Leo had an abiding appreciation of
nature's beauty and a well-used sense of humor. Leo leaves his family and friends his
example and lasting legacy: "Always seek after the best life has to offer and live
every moment of life to the fullest."
A celebration of Leo Cox's life will begin Monday, August 18, 2008, 11 a.m., at the
LDS Ward on Bear Lake Boulevard, Garden City, Utah, followed by a graveside dedication at
the Garden City Cemetery, after which family and friends will return to the Garden City
LDS Ward Cultural Hall to enjoy a luncheon together.
The Leo Cox family kindly requests that there be no flowers or memorial donations.
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