Service measured not by GOLD,
                           but by the GOLDEN RULE

Service measured not by GOLD,
          but by the GOLDEN RULE


Leslie Eleanor Jones Breeden, 85, of Wooster,  was the loving daughter of John Fountaine and Julia Eleanor Quill Jones.   Leslie was born in Wilmington,  Delaware but spent her youth  at her family’s Blue Mount country home in the rolling hills of  Baltimore County,  Maryland. She rode on the steam train that wound along the river through the valley below her home to school in town.   Leslie was proud to have attended Towson High School in Maryland, graduating in 1954. She attended Mary Baldwin College in Staunton,  Virginia.
Leslie was introduced to Bob at age 15 at The Rocks, the swimming hole on the Gunpowder River below his family farm. There started a grand union that served them so well for life. She married Robert Harlin Breeden June 9, 1956 and joined him in Charlottesville where he was  in  his last year of engineering at the University of Virginia.   Leslie was secretary to the Dean of the Law School.
After Virginia and to  meet Bob’s Army ROTC commitment, they moved to Aberdeen, MD then Fort Bragg,  and finally Nellingen,  Germany where they  experienced a most enjoyable  2 years.   On base, Leslie taught nursery school and kindergarten.    Perhaps the most spontaneous time of her life, they often  took off in their convertible Volkswagen  Bug  and discovered the scenery and the  courtesies  of the German people, who showed their appreciation for  America’s assistance after WWII. They also wandered the winding winter roads through the mountains into nearby France and Italy.
Leslie was the mother of two, Robert Jeffrey Breeden  with Lucy in Alaska,  and Barbara Carol Breeden-Schmenk  with  David Schmenk  in Dayton, Ohio. She was the grandmother of Brittany Lynne  Breeden Granger with Chris Granger,  in Alaska,  Robert Berry Breeden with Maddy  Breeden,  in Florida, and  John David Schmenk and Helen Marie Schmenk, both in Dayton.
Leslie agreed with Bob to move out to the country in Michigan to provide their children a good upbringing resembling what she and Bob had experienced. They found a striking, solid, 100 year old farmhouse that only needed their 14 years of toil and love to make sparkle like new. She drove in big snows, she made afternoon picnics in July heat, she loved her sunset view out tall farmhouse windows with wavy glass. She would sometimes find her kids high above the house in the swaying Norway pines in the big yard, and she encouraged her two kids to ride bikes on the quiet gravel roads. She taught her kids to swim, and purchased additional land on a nearby lake for her family to enjoy. She worked supporting the efforts of her husband and son renovating the farmhouse. The peaceful, respectful ritual of Grace Episcopal Church in Lapeer was special to Leslie, as well as being her center of social contact.
Leslie went back to college after her children were in school,  attending  part-time,  and graduated from the University  of Michigan in 1974 with a degree in Elementary Education.   While teaching full-time, she earned a Masters in Learning Disabilities and another in Reading from Oakland University.   While living in  Metamora, Michigan, she taught kindergarten, 1st grade, 1st/2nd (both at the same time) and 2nd grade.   In 1983 Leslie and Bob moved to Wooster, where he was VP of Engineering at Rexroth.   After many moves over the years, once they had arrived in Wooster, Leslie and Bob decided they had found home and considered themselves fortunate to be part of such a strong community. Leslie taught learning disabled students for 2 years in Apple Creek Elementary School.  She  would tell the students:   It’s my job to figure out how you learn. Once we do that, learning will become easier.    Leslie later taught First Grade at Layton Elementary School in Wooster.  Leslie could charm most students into their reading. While naturally soft and cheerful, Leslie knew just how to manage the distracted few, whom she sent to stand at the rail during recess, an embarrassing place to be when your friends are on the playground, watching you. She retired after 29 years of teaching in 2003. Leslie treasured her connections to Layton students as well as their parents, many of whom she enjoyed seeing as adults around Wooster.
Once retired, most of all, Leslie greatly enjoyed spending more time with family.   She  remained active with volunteer work, golf,  traveling and playing bridge with several groups.   She was a president & board member of the American Association  of University  Women where she was a Picture Lady, bringing examples of artists’ work and stories of their lives to Lincolnway School and other Wooster City schools.   She also prepared books for the yearly book sale to raise funds for scholarships for women returning to college.    She was president of Colony Club, Monday Club and Wooster CC 18 hole Golf League. She was active at St.  James Episcopal Church serving on the vestry, being a lay reader and chalice bearer, and later was a member of St. Christopher’s Anglican Church.
Leslie enjoyed travelling with her husband Bob to Canada, Alaska, Australia, New Zealand, throughout Europe, and to Costa Rica & Nicaragua with her son Bob and grandchildren Brittany and Bobby.   And she enjoyed traveling with her husband Bob  to State and National Parks  in the US in their  camper.
Leslie was the cheerful person who delightedly said, Be sure to take care of yourself., Be kind to yourself., and I’m thinking of you.
With very high recommendation, Bob and Barb appreciate the staff at Danbury for the attention and care they provided Mom, and the flexibility within the Danbury model for our closeness with Mom.
The service will be held at the  St Christopher’s Anglican Church  at 445 Bever Street on Monday January 31 at 1:00 pm.   The Celebration and Conversation will be held at West View’s new Connection Meeting Hall at the end of Country Club Drive from 2:00 to 5:00 that day.
McIntire, Bradham & Sleek Funeral Home, 216 E. Larwill St., Wooster is assisting the family.
Online condolences may be left for the family at

Memorial Contributions

St Christopher’s Anglican Church  at 445 Bever Street on Monday January 31 at 1:00 pm.

The Celebration and Conversation will be held at West View’s new Connection Meeting Hall at the end of Country Club Drive from 2:00 to 5:00 on Monday


  1. Your family comments truly reflect the Leslie I met and came to care about when I moved here to Wooster. The ease in which she welcomed newcomers was heartwarming. Through her social outreach, I met many similar kind ladies. I will always remember her as non-judgmental and accepting you no matter your worldly status. She valued her faith and walked the talk. May she rest in peace now that her worldly labors are done. My condolences to you at her loss.

  2. My thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time. Leslie was an amazing lady! I enjoyed working with her at Layton & bumping into her in the neighbor when they lived on Greensview. I’m hoping that all the kind memories that you will hear will help ease your sorrow.

  3. Leslie was a kind lady! She definitely made the world a better place. Our condolences to the entire family.

  4. My thoughts and prayers are with your family during this difficult time. I had “Mrs. Breeden” as my first grade teacher at Layton Elementary School from 1997-1998. Over two decades later, and I still have so many memories of her classroom. Her sticker board motivated me to love to read. We had the unique opportunity to incubate quail eggs and watch the chicks hatch in our classroom! I chuckled at the note about the infamous “rail.” I would run into Mrs. Breeden when I would visit home from college and the years since, and she always greeted me with a warm smile and had a pulse on my classmates’ and my latest endeavors. My year with her was a transformational experience. I hope your family finds comfort in knowing that she made a difference in so many lives. She will be missed!

  5. I send my sincere condolences to Leslie’s family. I have known Leslie for decades in AAUW circles. It has been a pleasure to know and work with her. She will be truly missed by all.

  6. So sorry to all the family. Leslie was one of the warmest woman I have ever known. Taught at Layton where my boys went to school. I live right next to the school, so Leslie and I often talked about what was becoming of it. I will miss her.

  7. We enjoyed having Bob and Leslie as our neighbors when they lived on Greensview. We had many interesting and delightful conversations. Our thoughts and prayers are with her children and grand children. Blessings.

  8. We so enjoyed being Bob and Leslie’s neighbors! Such wonderful people with warm loving hearts. We are sorry for you r loss. Our prayers are with you

  9. My sincere condolences to Leslie’s family. She was an outstanding teacher and a very welcomed addition to the Layton staff during her years there as first grade teacher! She has touched the lives of many many children along with the adults who have known her. Thank you for the beautiful tribute. My prayers and sympathy go out to you!

  10. My family is forever grateful for Leslie- she was my daughter’s teacher at Layton. She helped instill their love for learning, they really enjoyed their time in her classroom. Later, we loved catching up with Mrs. Breeden whenever we happened to see her around town. Please accept our sincere condolences. Our prayers are with your family.


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