Bill Richard Leemasters, age 81 of Kansas City, Missouri formerly from Rich Hill, Missouri passed away at Saint Luke's Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri on Monday, October 9, 2023. Billy was born on March 7, 1942, in Rich Hill to Elizabeth and Ted Leemasters. His immediate survivors include a niece, Lori (Leemasters) and her husband Benjamin Merithew, a nephew Jack Hartman and his wife Misha. Others left to cherish his memory are two great nieces Amber (Dobbins) Brethour (Preston Brethour) and Autumn Dobbins and a great-nephew, Bastian.
Billy spent his early life in Rich Hill. Then his family moved to Kansas City for work. In Kansas City he attended grade school. Later his two sisters were born Mary Elizabeth and Barbara Ann. He continued his education at military school. Billy would spend the summer in Rich Hill with his grandparents Paris and Mary Woodall. His grandfather was sheriff of Rich Hill. At 17-years old, his father became too ill to work, so Billy stopped attending school to help support the family.
He started work as a home builder with his Uncle Donnie. He later became an automotive mechanic and started his own business with his mother. Billy eventually became the chief mechanic for Toedman Cabs in Kansas City where he serviced over 100 cabs for 5 years during the 1960s. After that he continued to run the automotive repair business with his mother for 10 years before taking a job with the Chevrolet dealership in Raytown. He retired from there in the late 1980s.
After his father passed in 1971 he was the main provider for his mother and sisters. He also helped raise his niece, Lori, who grew up with the family. He was a devoted son, uncle and family member who helped care for his father, mother and sisters until their deaths and served as a father figure to his niece, Lori.
Billy enjoyed home remodeling, yard work and taking care of his family home in Kansas City. He had a love of racing and even street raced in the 1960s. He was a friend to many and he didn’t know a stranger. Billy’s life impacted many and he loved with a generous heart and was cherished by all who knew him.
Funeral Service will be held at 11:00 am, Saturday, October 14, 2023 at the Heuser Funeral Home in Rich Hill, Missouri. Burial will be at the Green Lawn Cemetery.