Dr. E. C. Leslie, Jr.
11/21/1939 - 09/13/2019
Dr. E. C. Leslie, Jr. passed away on September 13, 2019 following a brief illness. The family will host a time of fellowship and remembrance from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm on Friday, September 20, 2019, at Lake Ridge Chapel and Memorial Designers. Family and friends will gather to celebrate his life of 88 years at 11:00 am on Saturday, September 21, 2019, at Monterey Church of Christ. Family and friends are invited to share memories and expressions of sympathy, and view Dr. E. C. Leslie’s life tribute at www.memorialdesigners.net.
E. C. was born February 12, 1931, to Ernest Cleo and Estelle Deason Leslie in Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from Paseo High School in Kansas City, MO, in 1947 and then went on to attend Central Missouri State, where he received his Bachelor of Science in 1952. E. C. married Johnnie Kaneaster in Kansas City, Missouri. He received his Master’s degree in Education at Texas Tech University in 1957, and his Doctorate in Educational Leadership at Texas Tech University in 1970.
At the age of 19, he signed a contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates and played in their minor league system for two years. His baseball career was cut short by the Korean War as he was called to serve in the U.S. Army in 1952. He returned to baseball and played for two additional years in the minor leagues. During this time with the Lubbock Hubbers, he and his wife decided to make Lubbock their home.
Dr. E.C. Leslie served with the Lubbock Independent School District for more than 30 years. He began his career in 1957 as an American history teacher and baseball coach at Lubbock High School. In 1961 he became a counselor at Lubbock High and later served as the school’s Assistant Principal and Principal. After serving as the principal of Lubbock High for four years, he became Assistant Superintendent for Lubbock ISD. In 1984 he was named Lubbock ISD Superintendent and served in that role until his retirement in 1989.
E.C. was a founding member of Monterey Church of Christ, where he served as an elder, deacon, bible school teacher, and Christian mentor. He was involved in many community and professional activities, contributing both as a member and as President on the boards of numerous civic organizations. He was honored with multiple awards from the communities he served. Although he received much recognition, he valued his relationship with God and family as the highest possible achievement.
In his free time he could be found on the tennis court, at a ballgame, or playing bridge. He loved watching his grandkids play sports and weekly coffee and laughs with his Wisdom Club. Late in his life, he became the primary caretaker for his wife, Johnnie, who suffered from dementia. He was a model of love, patience, commitment, and humility to all who knew him. He has run the race and received the ultimate prize of heaven, finally rejoining the love of his life.
Those left to cherish his memories include his children; Leigh Leslie and husband, Fred Curdts of Silver Spring, MD; Tim Leslie and wife, Susan of Lubbock, TX; grandchildren, Logan Leslie and wife, Courtney; Brent Leslie and wife, Kyleigh; Evan Curdts, Lydia Curdts; and sister, Judy Denney.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Ernest Cleo, Sr. and Estelle Leslie; wife, Johnnie Leslie; and sister, Marilyn Klick.
Special thanks to Legacy of the South Plains and Hospice of Lubbock who lovingly cared for him during the last months of his life.
In lieu of flowers, the family of Dr. E. C. Leslie has requested memorial donations be made to Lubbock Christian University/ E.C. Leslie Family Endowed Scholarship, Lubbock Christian University Advancement, 5601 19th Street, Lubbock, Texas 79407, https://lcu.edu/support-lcu/student-scholarship/, or the Children’s Home of Lubbock, P.O. Box 2824, Lubbock, Texas 79408, https://childshome.org/giving/.