Celebrating the life of Leo Charles DeFeo
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Leo “Lee” Charles DeFeo age 68, of Marietta, Georgia died on Tuesday, March 7, 2017. He was preceded in death by his parents, Leo Nicholas and Helen Pauline DeFeo. Leo is survived by his beloved wife and best friend of 46 years, Carolyn Marie. He was the loving father of daughter Christina West and son-in-law Christopher; his son Nicholas Anthony and daughter-in-law Alexandria; and proud grandfather to Evan Phoenix West.
Leo was born on Christmas Day, 1948, in Baltimore, Maryland for the cost of $68.50, according to the hospital receipt. He weighed 7-1/2 pounds and measured 20-inches, and had a perfect head and neck per to his mother’s notes in his baby book. In his early years, he was an Eagle Scout, served as an altar boy in the Catholic Church, apprenticed with his father and uncles in various trades, was a drummer in the marching band and graduated from Mount St. Joseph High School in 1967. While in High School he met his beloved wife, Carolyn, on a blind date arranged by his cousin in 1967, where they saw the movie Endless Summer. They were married in 1970.
He attended the University of Baltimore, where he studied advertising. In the late 1970’s he decided to take a leap of faith to partner in a tire store, bringing him and his family to Atlanta.
His love for auto racing began at young age, and in his late teens he was able to realize a dream of owning his first race car, a purple Triumph TR4 convertible. He raced in the Sports Car Club of America Pro Series. Leo worked as a crew chief for a number of professional Sports Renault series race teams and enjoyed traveling the country to all the race events. He worked within the racing industry in many capacities, and served as a manager of a Goodyear service center for decades. The relationships he built during these years continued throughout his life.
When his son Nicholas was born, he stopped racing. By the time Nick was five years old, Leo put him into a Quarter Midget Race Car for the first time. He served as President of the Metro Atlanta Quarter Midget Association, and Leo was also a founding member of the North Georgia Quarter Midget Association. As crew chief of Team Nickosports for more than 20 years, he was very proud to receive the Crew Chief of the Year Award for the United Sprint Car Series in 2007.
Leo also served as Co-President of the Georgia Southern Parents Association for two years. After his retirement from professional life, he became an active member of the Retired Old Men Eating Out (ROMEO) social club.
He was a very involved grandfather, and his grandson loved when “Big” took him to tennis, but only after stopping first for a special treat of ice cream or donuts.
Leo was the friend who called regularly, gave advice when you didn’t necessarily ask for it but probably needed it, had a sharp sense of humor, an infectious laugh and a generous heart. He was loyal, never met a stranger, and knew a little something about everything.
Memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association at www.alz.org.
Visitation: 6 to 8 p.m., Friday, March 10 at Carmichael Funeral Home, Marietta.
Funeral Service: 11a.m., Saturday, March 11 at Carmichael Funeral Home Chapel, Marietta. Interment to follow at Cheatham Hill Memorial Park, Marietta.
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1130 Whitlock Avenue
Marietta, GA 30064
1130 Whitlock Avenue
Marietta, GA 30064
1861 Dallas Highwat
Marietta, GEORGIA 30064