Leroy J. LaClaire


Funeral services for Leroy J. LaClaire, 74, of Cherry Creek, were held Saturday, March 23 at 10:00 a.m., at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, Cherry Creek, with Father Matt Fallgren officiating. Music was provided by the Mennonite Church Singers and Daryl Whipple. Burial followed at the church cemetery under the direction of Stout Family Funeral Home, Mobridge. Family ans friends met at Cherry Creek Hill at 5:00 p.m. Friday to proceed to the church hall for wake services beginning at 7:00 p.m. Leroy entered the spirit world March 18, 2013 in Mobridge. www.stoutfamilyfh.com.

Leroy J. LaClaire was born to Vincent LaClaire, Sr. and Catherine Creek Condon September 14, 1938, in Cherry Creek, SD. He was raised by his grandparents, Josephine Hail Hawk and James Creek, until their passing and was then raised by his dad Vincent and Aunt Margaret. He grew up in Cherry Creek and Green Wood, SD. Leroy went to grade school in Cherry Creek and attended the Old Cheyenne Agency, finishing 8th grade. He started working when he was 13 years old, doing ranch work for various ranchers. He worked for Doug Knight, Bob and Ruth Samuelson and Sandstone Industries, later working as a janitor at Cherry Creek Day School, the BIA Roads Department and as a bus driver for the BIA School in Eagle Butte.

Leroy married Victoria Straight Head February 19, 1962. He raised two stepdaughters, Anita “Maria” and Deloria “Dee” and five children were born to this union, Carla, Darryl, Daren, Dana and Josephine. Leroy and Victoria raised their grandchildren Taccara, Tiara, Tiffany and Tyler. He showed love to his children by always providing for them rather than himself. He often cooked delicious breakfasts for his children and grandchildren and liked taking them to movies and out to restaurants. He was proud of his grandchildren and made sure to display their pictures on the wall in the living room. Tyler passed away in 2000 and Victoria in October of 2001. He missed them dearly and wanted to go be with them. Leroy talked about wanting to be buried by Victoria and Tyler.

Leroy had a stroke in 2010 which debilitated him and he went to the nursing home in Mobridge, SD. He yearned to be at home in Cherry Creek. He was a cowboy, loved old country music, loved to go to rodeos in Deadwood, Fort Pierre and Rapid City and would take his grandchildren to the carnival after the rodeo. He was quiet, but showed his love to his family by actions, always providing what he could for his children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Leroy has gone on to his final resting place survived by his children, Anita (Rhae) Washburn, Cherry Creek, Deloria Straight Head, Dupree, Carla (Leon) Veaux, Eagle Butte, Daryl, Daren and Dana (April) LaClaire, Cherry Creek and Josephine “Josie” (J. D.) Smith, Parshall, ND; 38 grandchildren including “Trans-Am Girl”, “Chuckie” and other nicknames he gave them; 81 great grandchildren and one gr-gr grandchild; brothers, Bernard (Gladys) LeClaire, Vincent (Alta) LeClaire, Melvin (Madeline) LeClaire, Edward LeClaire, Gordon (Doris) Condon and Michael (Patricia) Condon, Sr.; sisters, Annabelle LeClaire, Karen Mandan, Bernice Condon and June Condon; many nieces and nephews and extended family will also mourn his passing.

Leroy was preceded to the spirit world by his grandparents, Josephine Hail Hawk, James Creek and David and Alice LeClaire; parents, Pat and Catherine Condon and Vincent and Margaret LaClaire; wife, Victoria LaClaire; grandchildren, Tyson Beau LaClaire, Tyler Ann LaClaire and Elisha Zachery Veaux; great grandchildren, Elijah Thomas Veaux, Christopher James LaClaire and Jaylee Shayden Harrell.