Leiland (“Lee”) Leroy Sagrillo was born in Denver, Colorado, on September 24, 1943, to Robert Leiland Sagrillo and Dorothy Ellen Sagrillo (Hardin). He was a third-generation native Coloradan, and the eldest of three children. He is survived by his wife, Judy Ann Sagrillo (Tarpo); his son, Troy Leiland Sagrillo (Yan Wu); granddaughter, Anna Meihua Branwen Sagrillo; grandson, Maher Leiland Sagrillo (Maeve Landers); daughter, Tonya Reneé McIntosh (Dan McIntosh); sister, Dawn Kay Willbanks; brother, Robert Lynn Sagrillo; and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents.
Although Lee lived the majority of his life in Denver, shortly after his birth, he and his parents lived for a few years at the Alamogordo Army Air Field, New Mexico, where his father was stationed in the Army Air Corps. After the war, when the family returned to Colorado, Lee was baptized on April 21, 1946, in the Methodist Church of Eagle, Colorado.
Lee graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School, Denver, in 1961, and began his bachelor’s degree at Western State College in Gunnison, Colorado, graduating in 1964 with a major in mathematics and a minor in physics. It was at Western State where he met the love of his life, Judy Tarpo. They were married on August 10, 1962, at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Denver. Lee passed away just nine days short of their 60th wedding anniversary.
While a student at Western State, Lee worked as a dispatcher for the Gunnison Police Department. He enjoyed rabbit hunting, trout fishing, and watching the college’s football team.
After moving back to Denver with Judy in 1965, Lee was a student teacher in the Denver Public Schools, and in 1965 he worked as a teacher at Grant Junior High School in Littleton. He worked for King Soopers from 1966 to 1968. In 1968 he was hired as a programmer by the Gates Rubber Company in Denver, eventually becoming an HR Information Systems Manager; he retired after thirty years.
After retiring from Gates, Lee worked as an independent agent for Primerica, selling investments, financial services, and life insurance for a few years, but was later hired as the personal driver and concierge for Donald Seawell, the chairman of the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, a role Lee’s father had held for many years before.
Lee was especially active in the lives of his children, supporting them by volunteering in organizations they belonged to, such as the YMCA Indian Princesses, the Boy Scouts, sports teams, etc. Under the influence of his children, he learned to play the bagpipes and bass drum, and was an active member of the St. Andrew Society of Colorado Pipes and Drums, as well as the City of Denver Pipe Band.
Lee loved to drive and travel, and often went on cruises with Judy, or on long-distance road trips to see friends and family across the country. They also visited Canada, Scotland, England, Wales, and Belgium on several occasions, often to see their son and his family.
On February 11, Lee was diagnosed with a particularly rare and aggressive form of cancer (cholangiocarcinoma), and passed away in peace with his wife and children present on August 1, 2022, at home in Highlands Ranch.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 11:00 am, Wednesday, August 10, 2022 at Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Leiland Sagrillo may be sent to Shephard of the Hills Lutheran Church, 7691 South University Blvd, Centennial, Colorado 80122.