Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children


The Gladys Smith Society

Leila GillespieMrs. Leila Gillespie

Mrs. Leila Gillespie and her late husband Chuck have lived in the Ardmore area for approximately 20 years. She lost her husband to cancer in 1998, and a son, Charles Richard, on May 1, 1995. Her son was very accomplished in Boy Scouts, attaining the highest ranking of Eagle Scout. She and her husband moved here from Kansas, and they enjoyed playing Santa and Mrs. Santa at the malls and other Christmas functions for children. They gathered aluminum cans during the summer and used the money to buy candy canes for the children at Christmas. Mrs. Gillespie volunteers every day at the Senior Citizens' Center in Ardmore and ministers to others in need in the afternoon.

At the young age of 94, Mrs. Gillespie is a very busy, sharp lady who has a desire to serve others. She traveled to Washington D.C. in 2001 with OBHC children, staff and other guests. She was so overjoyed to be on the trip; she at one time made the statement, "I don’t even want to eat, I just want to see everything!" She loved being with the children and stated, "I feel like I have a whole new family!"

Mrs. Gillespie recently hosted a Hope and Homes Campaign Dinner at First Baptist Church, Ardmore attended by about 30 of her closest friends. She is very generous and has established a number of gift annuities naming OBHC, specifically the Baptist Home for Girls in Madill, as the recipient of such funds.

Mrs. Gayle Buck says, "It is an honor to know this delightful lady who is truly the epitome of a cheerful giver and does not desire any recognition. She truly is a Proverbs 31 woman." Therefore, her giving history and her love for children qualify her for nomination for membership in the Gladys Smith Society.

Mrs. Gillespie says that when they come to clean out her house someday, they will find all the cards and letters from the girls at Madill. She has kept them: every one.  06-03-03

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