Leroy Stephen “Jr.” Hibbs, 56, of Gillette died bravely in his home, due to complications of pancreatic cancer, on July 24, 2020. He was born February 26, 1964 in Hot Springs, SD to LeRoy E. Hibbs and Sharon Crawford Hibbs. He went to elementary school in Granite City IL, then moved back to Wyoming and graduated with straight A’s from CCHS, class of 1982.
In 1983, Jr. met and married Lori McDaneld and they had one son, Stephen LeRoy, in 1985. The two later divorced, but his commitment to his son only grew. LeRoy was a loving father to Stephen and later became a proud father figure to Dusty, Doug and John Mitchell when he formed a relationship with their mother, Juanita. Jr.’s compassion for others was undeniable and incomparable. For more than a decade, and through the end of his life, he shared his soul with longtime companion, Penny Joynt.
In high school, Jr. showed a real talent for carpentry. His dad was very proud of this accomplishment and was told by the teacher that with Jr. in charge of the crew, he knew the job would be exemplary. There wasn’t much Jr. couldn’t do when he put his mind to it. This was also obvious as he learned auto body and painting from his father. As an adult, he became ICAR certified and was sought after by local shops. He left a lasting impression of professionalism and dedication at each place he worked. Jr. spent the last few years of his life working back where he started, with his dad and little brothers at Hibbs Auto Body.
Jr. had a love and incredible knowledge of music. He knew the songs and the artists that fed his heart and mind and loved to share those with others. Sometimes on his favorite juke box, and often on stage at karaoke night. It is said there is a music trivia game at his favorite hangout that may forever hold his high score record. It is also known in Jr.’s circles that he played a mean game of darts and was even better on the pool table. Jr. loved Harleys and had a dream to rebuild his own and fulfill a desire to ride the wind with his friends and loved ones.
The world lost a kind, patient and non-judgmental soul. He could find a place in his heart for anyone who needed a friend and anyone who needed defending. One of the safest and most wonderful places to be was in those long arms of his, whether in a hug or at the end of a handshake. He had a gift of making everyone feel welcome and free to be who they were. LeRoy “Jr.” Hibbs was an original who carefully considered every word he ever said; the mold has been broken and we will forever feel his absence.
He is survived by his parents, LeRoy Hibbs Sr. and Sharon King; second mother Sharon Hibbs; son, Stephen; brothers, Brandon and Tony Hibbs; sister, Tina Thomas and her children, Chaycee and Carter; sister, Kristi David and her daughters Kayci and Kassidi; life partner, Penny Joynt; and numerous family members and very close friends.
Memorials and condolences may be sent in care of Gillette Memorial Chapel 210 West 5th Street, Gillette, WY 82716. Condolences may also be expressed at www.gillettememorialchapel.com.