Beverly Merle Leggett
Jan. 8, 1930-Jan. 30, 2019
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BEVERLY MERLE LEGGETT January 8, 1930 – January 30, 2019 Palo Alto, California
Beverly Merle (Merchant) Leggett, age 89, died January 30, 2019, in Palo Alto from complications of Parkinson’s disease. Her daughter, Christine Leggett Triska, and niece, Cathie Merchant Peterson were by her side in the final days of her illness. Born January 8, 1930, to a ranching family in Winters, California, Beverly demonstrated early on a talent for just about everything: academics, classical piano, and of course the ranch work that filled her days. By age 14 Beverly was driving a truck, preparing for college, and playing the organ on Sundays at Winters’ First Baptist Church. After graduating valedictorian from Winters High, Beverly attended UC Berkeley and UCSF where she earned her RDH in dental hygiene. There she met and married the love of her life, Richard Leggett. In short time they relocated to Seattle for Richard’s military duty in the army dental corps. Beverly found employment teaching dental hygiene at the University of Washington’s School of Dentistry and co-authored a textbook. When the Korean War ended, the couple moved to Menlo Park where they established Richard’s dental practice at 888 Oak Grove, settling down in Atherton for 35 years to work and raise two children, Christine and Jeff. Bev and Dick, as they were known, grew to be best friends and shared many happy times together, from building and enjoying their cabin in Ben Lomond, to sailing their Cal 20 in the San Francisco Bay and cycling in Europe. They were excellent business partners, too. Beverly later managed the dental practice until Richard’s retirement. In her will Beverly wrote to her children, “Please remember -- there is no material thing on this earth more important than family.” Indeed, she lived up to these words through her lifelong demonstrations of loving generosity. She was always ready to help a family member in need, and shortly after Richard’s death even volunteered in the Stephen ministry as a grief counselor for the First United Methodist Church in Palo Alto. Beverly is survived by her sister Carol Johnson, daughter Christine and husband John Triska and his children, grandchildren Ryan and Maren and their mother Birgitt Leggett, and five nieces and four nephews. The family would like to thank the staff at VI’s Health Center and Beverly’s Stanford doctors for their excellent care during her illness. A celebration of life will be held Saturday, June 8th in Woodside. Please feel free to call Christine Leggett Triska at (650) 743-8425 for details.