500 mourn 'special person' Leone

ABOUT 500 mourners gathered at St Patrick's Catholic Church, Wardell, on February 2 to farewell Leone Gay Barrett, a former Ballina and Woodburn business owner.

Leone (nee Court) passed away on January 29, aged 66.

Her family described her as a 'special person, warm and caring, who valued family and friends more than anything else'.

Leone was born on October 6, 1942, the first child and only daughter of Len and Flora Court.

She grew up in South Sydney and after leaving school completed a hairdressing apprenticeship.

She bought an Austin Healy sports car, and it soon became known that she loved a bit of speed.

This began a lifelong interest and passion for cars.

Even though she loved clothes, she was usually more interested in someone's new car than their new dress.

She met Allan Barrett through her Nanna when she was looking for a partner for the Hairdressers' Ball.

They married in 1965.

They lived at Botany and Phillip Bay and ran a landscaping business.

In 1973 the family moved to Woodburn and ran the motel. Although it was a seven-days-a-week job, they still made time for family.

In 1978 the motel was sold and the family moved to Ballina, and in 1981 they opened a fruit shop, which they ran until 1996.

After selling the fruit shop they moved to Pimlico and set up a landscape supplies business.

Leone was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and Parkinson Disease five years ago.

Leone and Allan had four children - Leanne, Julie, Shona and Adam - and seven grandchildren - Patricia, Alexander, Sarah, James, Claire, Harry and Charlotte. Leone was remembered as a devoted wife, mother and grandmother whose love knew no boundaries.

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