Wilhelmina K. “Billye” Leininger, age 80, passed away April 15, 2021 in her home in Archbold. Billye was co-owner of Leininger Floor Covering. She was also an immense presence in the lives of her family, her community, and St. James Lutheran Church; a true matriarch.
Billye was born January 5, 1941 in Henry County, the daughter of the late John and Doris (Dehnke) Winzeler. In 1960, she married Ronald Leininger, who preceded her in death in 2005. Billye was a strong-willed and confident woman. Her faith and church were her life, and she devoted her time as St. James Church treasurer, Sunday School teacher for over 30 years, and a women’s bible study leader. She was also a member of the St. James Brass Angel Handbell Choir and was a strong advocate for Lutherans for Life. She enjoyed golfing, gardening, her Ohio State Buckeyes, and the color purple; many would hear her answer the phone with “Billye’s Purple Palace”. Annual family summer vacations earned her the title “The Shark” to her nieces, nephews and especially her great nieces and nephews.
Billye is survived by her son, Jeff (Shari) Leininger of Archbold; daughter-in-law, Carla Gray of Virginia; granddaughter, Jessica Leininger of Cincinnati; grandson, Garrett Brezina of Cleveland; grandson; Eric (Lora) Leininger of North Carolina; grandson, Kurt Gray; and granddaughter, Samantha Gray. She is also survived by her great-grandson, Roan Mark Leininger; brother, Jerry (Cindy) Winzeler of Archbold; sister, Annie (Tom) Campbell of Stryker; brother, Tom (Suzy) Winzeler of Arizona; brother, Richard (Joyce) Winzeler of Pettisville; sister, Peg Winzeler of Archbold; and sister, Joyce (Wayne) Elling of Stryker. She was preceded in death by her husband, parents, and son, Mark Leininger.
Visitation for Billye will take place Tuesday, April 20, 2021 at the St. James Lutheran Church from 2pm – 7pm. A funeral service will take place on Wednesday, April 21, 2021 at the Church at 11am, with burial to follow at the St. James Lutheran Cemetery. Pastor James Strawn will officiate. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be given to Lutherans for Life or CPC Women’s Resources. Online condolences may be offered to the family at www.grisierfh.com. Grisier Funeral Home in Archbold is honored to serve the Leininger family.
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