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Leroy Reynolds

Leroy Reynolds, a Petaluma truck driver whose wanderlust took him to the seven continents of the world, has died. He was 91.

The globe-trotting World War II veteran did most of his travels in his retirement with companion Gladys Cheda, whom he met in 1995.

"Gladys liked to travel and Leroy did too," said his son, Richard Reynolds of Petaluma. "They traveled like crazy."

Reynolds was born in 1922 and grew up on a ranch in Sundance, Wyoming. He graduated from high school in 1940 and joined the Navy to see the world, his son said.

He was on ships in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and was involved in battles at Iwo Jima and Okinawa, his son said.

During a stop at San Francisco aboard the USS Idaho, he met his late wife, Lois Thornhill of Marin County, at a USO dance. They married in 1942 and settled in Petaluma. They had three children.

Reynolds worked first as a farm hand and later a track repairman for Northwestern Pacific Railroad. He took a trucking job with a relative and later opened his own company, which he sold before retiring in 1990. His wife died the next year.

They loved to dance and travel, taking many trips to Hawaii. After Reynolds met Cheda, the two completed a goal of visiting all the continents.

Reynolds was also an avid poker player, loved gardening and sports. He became an Alcoholics Anonymous mentor and was involved in St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church.

He became ill recently and moved into Adobe House nursing home in Petaluma. He died Sunday.


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