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Leslie Florea

Leslie Gayle Wintermute Florea passed away in Grand Island, Nebraska on September 30, 2020 at the age of 84.

A Memorial Service will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, October 5th at the Higby-McQuiston Chapel, located at 1404 L Street in Aurora, NE. Graveside service at the Aurora Cemetery to follow. Lunch will be served at the Bremer Community Center, 1604 L St. in Aurora. No Visitation. Current CDC guidelines will be followed. Face masks are recommended. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials may be designated for either York Adopt A-Pet, 1511 N Platte Ave, York, NE 68467; or the Friends of the Library (York Kilgore Memorial Library), 520 N. Lincoln Ave, York, NE 68467. Condolences may be e-mailed to the family through the mortuary website at www.higbymortuary.com.


Leslie spent her early childhood years in Friend, Nebraska. The family moved to McCook, Nebraska, where they spent the WWII years. As her father was a newspaper typesetter, one of Leslie’s childhood memories was selling newspapers to servicemen passing through on troop trains. Her junior high and high school years were spent in Hastings, Nebraska, where her father owned a print shop. Leslie graduated from Hastings High School in 1954 and from Hastings College with a degree in English secondary education in 1958. While in college she met the love of her life, Ronald Florea, and the two were married on November 23, 1957 in Hastings. Leslie taught high school English at Juniata, Nebraska for one year, and at Trumbull, Nebraska two years, and was a substitute teacher in the Aurora schools for many years. After the family moved to the country in 1972, Leslie enjoyed daily life on the family farm. She also worked part time for the Hamilton County Superintendent of Schools during this time. For a number of years she worked at First National Bank in Aurora. She closed out her working years by working as a paraprofessional at Aurora Elementary School.

Leslie and Ron retired from farming in 2001 and moved to Ord, Nebraska. She and Ron enjoyed living close to the Calamus Lake, where they often took their children's families boating and tubing.

The couple relocated to Stromsburg where they enjoyed small town living. In 2014 they relocated to York, Nebraska, to be closer to family.

Leslie loved water sports, including water skiing and swimming. She and Ron enjoyed many trips to tropical locations where they also enjoyed snorkeling. Reading was a lifelong passion and she served on the Board of the Aurora Library.

Leslie was a longtime member of the American Legion Auxiliary.

Leslie was blessed to be surrounded with family and friends. She enjoyed time with friends playing in several bridge clubs for most of her adult life. She also loved having her children and grandchildren visit and their family dinners.

Leslie will be missed by her husband Ronald of York, daughter and son-in-law Lee Ann and Galen Maresh of York, son and daughter-in-law John and Valerie Florea of Lenexa, Kansas and son Mike Florea of York. Grandchildren left to cherish her memory are Justin Maresh and fiance Nikki Thomas of Golden, Colorado; Allison Maresh and spouse Kelly Malone of Santa Fe, New Mexico; Alex Maresh of Santa Fe, New Mexico; Lauren Florea and fiance Kal Safy of Manchester England; and Casey Florea of Lenexa, Kansas. Brother Gary Wintermute of Hastings; sister-in-law Diane Wintermute of Holdrege and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins. She was preceded in death by her parents Merlin and Gertrude Wintermute, siblings Carol and husband Burt Henry; Roger Wintermute and Richard Wintermute of Holdrege, Nebraska.

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