Vernon Parish native and community matriarch, Gloria Leach Owen entered her eternal rest and went home to be with the Lord on Aug. 25 after a lengthy illness.

Vernon Parish native and community matriarch, Gloria Leach Owen entered her eternal rest and went home to be with the Lord on Aug. 25 after a lengthy illness.
Mrs. Owen was a life-long resident of Vernon Parish. She was born in Slagle on June 30, 1925. The second daughter of Claude and Lucille Leach, she spent her entire life in Vernon Parish. Gloria attended and was a 1942 graduate of Leesville High School, where she was an active member of the Wampus Cat Marching Band.
After high school, Mrs. Owen attended Port Arthur Business College, in Port Arthur, Texas where she received credentials in business and office management. During her early years she was very active in civic and youth activities, including Rainbow Girls where she mentored three generations of young girls in Leesville.
In 1955, Gloria married Chester Creighton Owen, also of Leesville. The two operated The Style Center ladies ready-to-wear store for 42 year and were pillars of the local community. Together, they were active in the Leesville civic community as members of Association of the United States Army, Vernon Parish Chamber of Commerce and various other organizations.
Most prominently Mrs. Owen served as chairman of the Leesville Women's Commission. During her tenure as Chair, she spearheaded the Clean City drive and was instrumental in Leesville being selected as Cleanest City in the state of Louisiana in 2001.
Mrs. Owen was a born again Christian and was an active and life-long member of the First United Methodist and Grace Southern Methodist Churches of Leesville.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Chester Creighton Owen and her parents Claude and Lucille Leach.
She is survived by her dear siblings, whom she loved, cared for greatly and prayed for earnestly, sister, Mixon Lee Brabham and her husband Paul of Richardson, Texas; sister, Martha Sanderson and husband Ralph of Tampa, Fla.; brother and former U.S. Congressman Claude Leach and his wife Laura of Lake Charles; sister, Frances Watson and husband Robert of Montgomery, Texas; and sister and former Johnson Space Center Director, Dr. Carolyn Huntoon and her husband Harry of Barrington R.I.
Mrs. Owen is also survived by her children, daughter Mae Ann White and her husband, Jamie of Leesville; son, Charles Anthony Owen and his wife Carolyn Owen of Benton; grandchildren, Joseph Creighton Ledet of Baton Rouge, and Laura Gaye and Emma Frances Owen, both of Benton.
Visitation for Mrs. Owen will be from 4-8 p.m. on Aug. 26 at the First United Methodist Church of Leesville. Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. on Aug. 27 at the church. Graveside burial will take place immediately following the services at the Leesville cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the Owen Family asks that donations be made to the Leesville High School Alumni Association or the Methodist Children's Home of Ruston.
Words of comfort may be expressed to the Owen family at www.labbymemorial.com.