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Ann Pike Leak, 81, of Riverview, Alabama passed away at Bethany House in Auburn, Alabama on July 27, 2023. Ann is survived by her husband of 54 years, D.S. “Sammy” Leak, III; daughters, Marie A. Leak and Lee Ann Leak; granddaughters, Hannah Williams and Faith Williams; and one great grandchild who brought her much joy, Colton Earl Holloway. Ann is also survived by brothers, Billy Joe (Beth) Pike and Jerry Pike of Standing Rock, Alabama.
Ann was the daughter of the late Billie and Pauline Pike of Standing Rock, Alabama. Ann was the second oldest child in her family. Growing up, Ann enjoyed helping her Dad farm and driving the tractor. After school, Ann would get up her homework so she could spend time plowing or checking on the cows. Ann even helped move dirt around when her parents’ house was built in Standing Rock. Ann has always taken pride in her work and has heard her Dad say many times, “If you’re going to do something, do it right the first time.”
Ann worked for West Point Pepperell at Fairfax Mill in the late 1960s. Her co- worker Doretha Leak told her she knew of a young man (Sammy Leak) that was home from Vietnam. She told Ann that Sammy had a good tan, was in the Air Force and was a pilot. Doretha and Sammy’s cousin Mary Alice Bledsoe managed to set up the blind date. They met at Lanett Airport and Sammy took Ann up for a flight. They fell in love and got married on December 20, 1969. Mary Alice Bledsoe became a very close friend of Ann’s. The Air Force moved the family around several different times from Wilmington, NC to San Antonio, TX and to Huntsville, AL. After 23 years, Sammy retired from the Air Force and in 1986 the family moved to Riverview, Alabama to be closer to their families.
Upon returning to the Valley area in 1986, Ann got a job with West Point Pepperell and had some great bosses who became family to her. Ann worked for Barbara Powell and Jenny Reaves and made life-long friends. Ann cared for people and had many friendships with her church family at Friendship Christian Church. Ann enjoyed eating fried catfish at Roger’s BBQ with her church friends Mrs. Sue Bridges and Mr. Bernard Paschal and helping Mary Alice Bledsoe with errands or visiting others. Ann and friends Virginia Elliott, Debbie Bridges, and Mary Alice have been known to eat at Sunny’s for lunch and talk for hours and hours.
In 1983, while living in Huntsville, Ann was diagnosed with breast cancer. She had a mastectomy and underwent 8 months of chemotherapy and once she got the all- clear 5 years later, she had reconstructive surgery. Ann’s sweet mother-in-law Helen Leak gave Ann a Sunshine Basket which held little gifts. The instructions were simple, just open one gift per day to bring a little bit of sunshine to your day that might be blue. Over the years, Ann has made many Sunshine Baskets for others going through chemotherapy. A few months ago, Ann asked her daughters to buy gifts for a friend that just started chemo. Ann started having health problems in 2021. Tests revealed the cancer had come back. Ann underwent chemo pill therapy and was able to go on some family trips and enjoy life. One memorable trip was the winding road to the Coon Dog Cemetery. Ann began to grow tired and weak toward the end of June. On July 27, 2023, Ann moved to the Bethany House for her transition to Heaven. She said many times that she was ready to go when it was her time. She said as soon as she closed her eyes she would be in Heaven when she opened them.
Ann was predeceased by her parents, Billie & Pauline Pike; sisters Mary Jim Norred (Jimmy) and Jackie Windsor (James); youngest brother Tony Pike; nieces and nephews, Penny Norred, Theresa Norred, Mark Windsor; sister-in-law Maggie Pike; and great nephew Tyler Norred. Family was important to Ann. She enjoyed spending time with Sammy, Marie, Lee Ann, Hannah, Faith, and precious Colt. She loved to laugh. Ann was known by some as Annie-O. If you don’t know how she got the nickname I have a neat story to tell you. As teenagers, Ann and her brother Billy Joe had .22 rifles and they were good shots. They would stand up matches in the dirt. Ann would aim at the match and strike it with her bullet and Billy Joe would aim at the lit match and put out the fire with his bullet. Thus, the nickname of Annie-O (Annie Oakley).
Our Ann will be deeply missed by her family and friends. She was a great Daughter, Sister, Wife, Mom, Grandmother, Great Grandmother, and Friend. Ann was Sammy’s sweetheart, and he did everything he could for her. On Saturday, July 22, Sammy suffered a stroke and is recovering from it at Baptist South in Montgomery. On Tuesday, July 25, Ann was taken to the hospital due to extreme weakness.
Ann was greeted in Heaven by a large crowd of family and friends, and we rejoice that her health has been restored and she is having so much fun. Her granddaughters have said that she is probably cutting grass up in Heaven because she loved doing yard work.
Funeral services for Ann will be held on Tuesday, August 1st, 2023 at 11:00 AM (EDT) at the Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home Chapel in Valley. Interment will follow in Fairview Cemetery. Ann’s family will receive friends Tuesday morning from 10:00 AM (EDT) until the service hour at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Friendship Christian Church in Riverview, Alabama, Bethany House of Auburn, Alabama, or to your favorite charity.
Please visit Ann’s Memorial Tribute page at www.johnsonbrownservicefh.com to leave a kind word for her family, to share a memory of Ann, or to light a Remembrance Candle in her memory.
Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home of Valley directing.