Leonna Joy Cockrill

Leonna Joy Cockrill formally of Platte City, MO born March 26,1948 passed February 8, 2023 at The Groves Nursing Home in Independence, MO. Friends and family are invited to her Graveside Service at the Platte City Cemetery in Platte City, MO Sunday, June 4th at 3:00 pm.

Leonna grew up in Platte City attending elementary school and graduating from high school there in1966. During her younger years she went to the Platte City Christian Church with her grandmother, Frances Wagle Holybee who served in the children’s nursery for many years. After high school she attended college at William Woods and completed her studies at the University of Missouri-Columbia and later received her master’s degree in education. She taught English and related courses for many years at several schools teaching longest at Harrisonville High School where she was also the student council sponsor. One of her greatest joys was teaching. Leonna was much beloved by her students. To know her was to love her. She had a wit about her that was contagious and a laugh that would light up the room.

During Leonna’s lifetime she had many dogs and would call them her “Kids. Two of her fur babies, Lucy and Ellie, still survive in the home of her close and dear cousin Melinda Stubbs Marsh. Leonna and her parents Tom and Joanne Cockrill shared a close friendship for many years with Diane Brown. Leonna, being an only child and no children, asked Diane to be her power of attorney. When Leonna’s health began to fail Diane was continuously there to check on her, she was a wonderful and caring friend to Lee. (Many called her Lee.) Sadly, Dianne passed suddenly in January 2023 before Leonna’s passing.

Leonna was preceded in death by her parents, Tom Cockrill and Joanne Holybee Cockrill and birth father Gene Cox. Tom Cockrill was the only father she knew. His nick name for her was “Punk”, he always had a wink, hug, and a smile for her. During her lifetime she spent many visits at her Uncle Mike and Aunt Freda Cox’s home in Platte City, with her Uncle Bob and Aunt Margaret Cockrill’s home in California and with her Aunt Mary Holybee Stubbs and Uncle Gerald Stubbs going on vacations and celebrating holiday’s. She was fortunate to have many cousins and relatives she loved and shared wonderful memories with. She will be missed by each one.

Survivors include aunt, Margaret Cockrill of Weston, MO, cousins Janet Cockrill Terpening, David Cockrill and wife Cindi, Tom Cockrill and wife Renne, Janie Cockrill Yuille Kidd and husband Darrell Kidd, Kim Yuille and husband Jay Yuille (deceased). Maternal cousin Melinda Stubbs Marsh. Paternal cousins: Craig Cox and wife Ida Beth Reineke Cox, Terry Cox Durand and husband Gary Durand, Bruce Cox. She also leaves behind many other relatives, close friends, and numerous former students.


  1. Robin Smith on February 27, 2023 at 3:35 pm

    Lee was a special friend. I got to know her at Raytown Christian Church and continued to visit her through our Stephen Ministry program. I always enjoyed her wit and sense of humor. My condolences to the family.

  2. Bruce Cox on March 5, 2023 at 8:17 am

    Leona was family and a friend that our family cherished, her visits were always cheerful, her sassy attitude would always brighten Mom and Dads day. They loved her as one of their own. Wish we had more time Leona gone way too soon.

  3. Sara McCaleb on May 25, 2023 at 2:29 pm

    Leonna and I went to school together in Platte City. We did not keep in touch after that time until a few years ago when we reconnected at a reunion and then via Facebook.
    I look forward to connecting with her again in Heaven! Praying comfort for all her family and friends.

  4. Jobeth Frakes on May 30, 2023 at 6:58 am

    Leonna, you were a good friend for a long time! I definitely miss getting with you for lunch. ??

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