of Ann Arbor, MI, age 51, died Saturday, February 11, 2012 at her home. She was born May 26, 1960 in Ecorse, Michigan, the daughter of Lowell & Carol (Burgess) Chesnut.
Gerry's passion was for her children and her husband. After them and others closest to her, Gerry's interests focused on her horses and dogs. She successfully competed on a national basis showing both light horses and draft breeds. She managed one of the largest Percheron breeding farms in the country which won many competitions with its gelding and mare six and eight horse hitches, including the all draft breed national six horse hitch competition in 1998. Gerry specialized in equine reproduction and she bred, foaled, and showed several Percheron mares to national championships. Among her favorite dogs was her champion Jack Russell, several English Setter field trial champions and Rachel, another of her English Setters and her favorite canine companion. Her determination to lead her life as she had hoped and ongoing cheerfulness in doing so, notwithstanding the extreme pain she frequently encountered during her 12 year battle with cancer, is an inspiration to all who knew her. She drew special strength in her trust in and love for our Savior.
On June 5, 1999, she married John R. Leekley in Gladwin, MI, and he survives. She is also survived by her daughter, Lindsey (Seth) Hannah of Gladwin; two sons, Dale Gildner and Lee Gildner of Ann Arbor; two step-sons, John (Silvia) Leekley of Atlanta, GA and Michael Leekley of Ann Arbor; and five grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at a later date.
Memorial contributions may be made to U of M Cancer Clinic or St. Joseph Cancer Center of Ann Arbor. Arrangements by Cole Funeral Chapel, Chelsea.