Leslie Kays Allen Wills, 78, died Monday afternoon, March 16, 2020, at her home in Vernon, from complications of a lengthy illness. She was born Monday, Nov. 3, 1941, in Phoenix, to the late Harvey Leslie and Katie A. (Brown) Mott.
Her father was a renowned and respected writer for The Arizona Republic and was also a reporter for KOY Radio. He worked with Arizona Governor Howard Pyle. In 1955, Leslie moved with her family to Washington, D.C. where her father worked for the Department of Civil Defense under the Dwight D. Eisenhower Administration. Leslie was a woman who was proud of her heritage. She is the granddaughter of Polly Hicks Brown who, in 1989, was posthumously inducted into the Arizona Women's Hall of Fame. She was a Payson entrepreneur, seamstress, rancher and cattle wrangler.
Leslie was a graduated member of Annandale High School's Class of 1960 in Annandale, Virginia. On May 13, 1960, Leslie married James C. Allen in Arlington, Virginia, and together, during their 19 year marriage, they had four wonderful children. They were proud of their kids and helped rear them into responsible young adults and taught them values that have enriched each one in their own lives. Leslie later married "the most amazing man," Gregory G. Wills, Jan. 1, 1982, in Las Vegas, Nevada. He took on the privilege of loving her children as his own and, for the next 38 years, he did just that. Leslie and Greg shared a beautiful life together and were even more elated as their family grew with the addition of each grandchild. Theirs was and, continues to be, a close tight-knit family. Together, they find a great deal of peace and comfort in knowing that truly "Family is Forever."
Leslie is survived by her husband, Gregory G. Wills of Vernon; four children: Michael H. Allen of Evanston, Wyoming, Kim (Roger) Olson of Glendale, Lisa A. (Brent) Henry of Gilbert, Mark C. (Jenny) Allen of Gilbert; two sisters: Polly Hardbower of West Virginia, Nichola "Nikki" Duvall of West Virginia; seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Along with her parents and first husband, Leslie was preceded in death by her sister, Martha Gartley and great-granddaughter Cassandra Elise Beckman.
A memorial service will begin at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 28, at Owens Livingston Mortuary - White Mountain Chapel, 320 N. 9th Street in Show Low.
Memorial contributions, in her name, to Pregnancy Care Center (PCC): pccchandler.com have been suggested by her family. Leslie's family continues to be grateful for the kindnesses they have received during this difficult time and are especially grateful for the prayers offered up in their behalf.
Owens Livingston Mortuary of Show Low handled arrangements.
For those who have special memories and would like to send private condolences or sign our online guest book, we invite you to visit our website at www.owenslivingstonmortuary.com.