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Barbara's Story

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Barbara Leclair (née Mealiff), 89, died peacefully surrounded by her loving children on Feb. 16, 2018, in Grand Rapids, MI.
She was born in Philadelphia to James and Winifred (Reilly) Mealiff of Philadelphia, PA, and sister of Drexel Hill, PA, residents James Mealiff Jr., Winifred Gregory, Christine Mealiff and also Mary Betz, of Woodbridge, VA, all of whom preceded her in death.
She was the beloved wife of the late Donat (Don) R. Leclair Sr., who passed away nine years ago, after 57 years of marriage, in Fairfield Glade, TN.
Family was a defining part of Barbara's life and she was the devoted mother of Donat Leclair Jr. of Canton, MI, Stephen (Gengi) Leclair of Fremont, MI, Jeanne (Bob) Lappin of Gaithersburg, MD, Christine Corriveau of Orland Park, IL, and Elizabeth Leclair, most recently of Fairfield Glade, TN. She was a treasured Nannan to 21 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren. She is further survived by nephews and nieces and their families.
Barbara was known for her great sense of humor, warm laugh and love for her family. She had a wonderful sense of style, evident in all of her endeavors. Barbara loved people and was known as a fantastic hostess - whether it was a family gathering, a St. Patrick's Day party or an elegant dinner party.
As a young wife and mother, she was always involved in an active way with her children's activities.
In Plymouth, MI, she was an owner and proprietor of a successful home decor and candle shop, "Pick O' the Wick," on the board of the Chamber of Commerce, and headed up the parking commission in town.
While she and Don lived in New Jersey, she was president of the Irish-American Cultural Society.
The last move on their journey was to Fairfield Glade in 1987 and they enjoyed their retirement there. Barbara played bridge, golfed, had many wonderful friends and had a fun-filled social life, all while continuing her love of all types of needlework.
A woman of strong faith, she was active in her church wherever she lived. Back in the early days of St. Francis of Assisi (in the Glade), Barbara led the choir for several years and became a Eucharistic Minister. After Don passed away in 2007, she studied for and became an Oblate Sister.
You never wondered where you stood with Barbara; she told things as she saw them. She was a fierce friend and loyal to everyone she loved. Simply put, she loved life in every sense, and will be deeply missed.
Services for Barbara will be held on March 10, 2018, at St. Francis of Assisi in Fairfield Glade, TN, at 10 a.m.
Published on February 26, 2018
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