Local businessman Harold LeRoy DeShields, owner of DeShields Truck Service in Stockyards City, passed away peacefully at the age of 94 at his home in Oklahoma City surrounded by his family.
Born September 3, 1924 in Los Angeles, California to parents Atha and Roy DeShields, his family moved to Oklahoma City in 1929 where LeRoy would call home for the next 90 years. At 18 years old, with World War II breaking out all over the globe, LeRoy enlisted in the United States Navy, serving in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii from 1942 until 1945 as an Aviation Machinist.
Upon returning to his hometown, LeRoy wasted little time beginning what would become a long and storied career as a Stockyards City business owner when he purchased, with a small loan from his father, a Phillips 66 service station on Exchange Avenue. His next venture would be into installing air conditioners into automobiles, well before it became a standard feature.
In 1967, he would begin what would become one of the two loves of his life when he purchased what is now known as DeShields Truck Service at 2115 Exchange Avenue, a Class 8 diesel truck frame and undercarriage repair shop. DeShields Truck Service, through several expansions and with a handful of dedicated employees, some of whom remain there to this day, would become not only a local institution but a nationally recognized business for the next 52 years.
In 1969, at a Shrine Circus event, LeRoy would be introduced to the second love of his life, JoAnn. After their first date on February 4, 1970, they would remain by each other’s sides for the next 50 years, becoming not only partners in marriage but in building a life and a successful business together.
LeRoy is survived by his wife of 47 years JoAnn, daughters, Sharon Huddleston and Sue Lockner, son, LeRoy “Butch” DeShields, Jr., stepson Tony McCormack, grandson Josh McCormack, granddaughters, Tony Jo McCormack, Melissa Young, Michele Westerman, Rachel Brown and Danis DeShields.
LeRoy was preceded in death by his parents, mother Atha DeShields and father Roy DeShields, his brother Bob DeShields, and his daughter Sandy DeShields.
LeRoy was a founding and permanent board member of the Stockyards City Mainstreet Association, a Special Deputy Oklahoma County Sheriff and a 32nd Degree Mason.
Visitation will be held 6:00-8:00 PM Thursday with family present to greet friends at Resthaven Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at 2:00 PM Friday, August 23, 2019, at Exchange Avenue Baptist Church.
In lieu of flowers, please make all donations to the Alzheimer’s Association.