Leonard Reagins was born on November 26, 1927. He was the second son born to Cornelius Reagins and Vena Holland Reagins.  He attended public schools of Carthage, Texas in Panola County. As a young man Leonard married Laura Bell Fite Johnson and to this union four children were born; Manuel Larry, Wanda Sue, Linda, and Leonard, Jr. (Sammy). In 1953, Peggy L. was born in Palm Springs, CA. In 1962, Leonard married Sarah Elizabeth Harrison and to this union five children were born; Marsha Leonette, DeNae Lamont, Soncia Rae, Michael DeSean, and DeAngelus (Gigi).

 Leonard Reagins was an entrepreneurial spirit.  He truly enjoyed working outside and generating income. For nearly half a century and until his health began to fail, Leonard consistently sought opportunities to earn money using his trucks and tractors. It was not unusual to find him in the desert area building or excavating using equipment he purchased or built himself. In the early 50’s, he was a part of the team that constructed the world-famous Los Angeles Dodger’s Stadium. Over his lifetime he participated in the construction of some the most distinguished properties in the desert area. 

When he was not working, he was fishing!  Leonard loved testing new canals for catfish and revisiting fishing holes throughout most of Southern California and parts of Mexico. He also enjoyed sharing produce from the gardens he created in any vacant land he could plant a seed.  His favorite crops included watermelon, peas, collard and turnip greens, corn, cucumbers, peppers, and tomatoes.  Not too far from his garden, you would often find farm animals such as chickens, raccoons, pigs, cows and of course, mans’ best friend, the family and neighborhood pet, “Mr. Big Stuff”.  As a true outdoorsman, while spending time at his homestead in Texas, he would often try his hand at hunting wild game. 

Leonard Reagins was an avid Los Angeles Lakers fan who rarely missed a televised game.  He was a supporter of the Banning Broncos and even joined the booster club during the years his children played. Undoubtedly, his love of the game stemmed from his time as a gifted basketball player in his younger days.

Leonard transitioned from this life on June 18, 2016.  He is survived by his wife, Sarah Elizabeth Reagins, his brothers Devola Reagins (Thelma), Nelvin Reagins, Murl Reagins (Rose Marie), and Freo Reagins (Shelley). Also, his children Linda Reagins-Amis, Leonard, Jr. Reagins, Peggy L. Reagins-Sternes, Marsha L. Reagins (DeShawn), DeNae L. Reagins, Soncia Reagins-Lilly (Leslie), Michael D. Reagins (Adrienne), DeAngelus Reagins and a host of grand, great-grand, great-great grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.

Preceding him in death were two children, Wanda Sue and Manuel Larry and two grandchildren, Brandon and Tieara. 

Tributes are short messages commemorating Leonard, or an expression of support to his closest family and friends. Leave your first tribute here, and others will follow.

Leave a Tribute

Recent Tributes
Recent stories
Shared by Michael Reagins on June 26, 2016

I read of a man who stood to speak at the the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on her casket from beginning to the end. He noted that first came the date of her birth and spoke of the following date with tears, but he said what mattered most of all was the dash between the years. For that dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth and now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth. For it matters not, how much we own, the cars, the house, or the cash. What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash. So think about this long and hard; Are there things you would like to change? For you never know how much time is left that can still be rearranged. If we could just slow down enough to consider what is true and real and always try to understand the way other people feel. And be less quick to anger and show appreciation more and love the people in our lives like we have never loved before. If we treat each other with respect and more often wear a smile. Remembering that thsi special dash might only last a little while. So when your eulogy is being read with your life's actions to rehash... Would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent your dash?

Dad Did The Damn Thing!

Shared by Michael Reagins on June 26, 2016

We are grieving over the loss of our Dad—one day before Father’s Day and less than a month before we would celebrate Mom’s 80th birthday with him. We really don’t have words to describe our loss. Dad was the bedrock of our family and though he was as silent as the sun, he would always rise, do his job and then set only to rise again. We relied on him to do that and he always showed up, with all he had, good, bad or ugly. Daddy never fit the mold of the TV fathers we watched growing up—The Rifle Man, The Courtship of Eddie’s Father showing their dad, tossing a baseball, giving piggy back rides, attending ball games while eating hotdogs. Nope, not our dad. Daddy was more likely to let you drive or ride in his tractor or truck. He was more likely to let you work on the farm or the garden, shoot his gun, drive without a license or do a number of other mildly inappropriate things. That was our dad. While TV dads didn’t seem to work much and never showed emotions, our dad worked 12 hour days, and on occasion, would come home sun beaten from 100 plus degrees of desert heat, beaten down from a day filled with verbal abuse from racist bosses who over worked and under paid him. Dad showed his emotions easily after a long day. We saw his rage, pain and anger. On more than one occasion he kicked us and our company out of the house—we laugh at that now. His barking was outrageous, but looking back—we get it. Other than fishing, dad didn’t have many escapes from his complex reality—think about it, he wasn’t rich, a bunch of kids and a wife with high standards. In spite of his circumstances, dad did the damn thing. He lived life to the fullest without asking anyone’s permission, and then, after he finished milking this life for all it was worth, he drew his last breath. Dad didn’t cover his car seats, save dishes and towels for company, he didn’t hoard his money, he used it all for the moment. Dad’s trucks, shoes, clothes, gloves, hats, boots, socks, wallets, and tools were all worn out. Nothing was saved—he did the darn thing. We can’t judge him for how he did the best he could with what he had--we all do that. Doing our best is the most we can ever do. A 7 year old once made it clear when asked how his first day of school went. He replied, I did some good things and I did some bad things, but I apologized for the bad things. A lesson we could all use.