Lilly Lesley

Lilly Lesley

Lilly Lesley

March 23, 1926~June 03, 2024

Lilly Walzer Lesley passed away peacefully, surrounded by family on June 3, 2024 in Naples, FL.

Lilly was born March 23, 1926 in Breslau, Germany, to Elfrieda Bloch and Max Walzer. Her charmed childhood was interrupted by Hitler’s determination to exterminate the Jewish people and their culture. Lilly fled Germany with her parents and her brother, Gunther, in 1939 to South America eventually settling in La Paz, Bolivia.  She married young and had her first child, Susie in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She struggled as a single mother and they experienced much hardship.

In 1953, Lilly married a young American Marine Corps Sergeant, Steven Lesley, from Chicago, IL in Buenos Aires while he was assigned to the US Embassy there.

Lilly was a survivor in every sense of the word. She taught her children, Susie, Gary, Michelle and Debby valuable life lessons about resilience, hard work and faith. Her exuberance and zest for life kept her very active well into her late 90’s. She loved serving and caring for others, gardening, walking, cooking and her daily water aerobics. Living in Naples allowed her to enjoy life to the fullest.

Lilly leaves behind a void that will never be filled, as she was truly an example to her family and many friends, of strength and fearlessness of facing life’s many challenges. Lilly touched others by her ability to embrace joy and express gratitude. This will be her legacy. She lives on in those who knew her, a true inspiration.

Besides her four children, Lilly is survived by grandchildren, Richard, Monica, Jacob, Simon, Henry, Flora and Gabriel, her 11 great grandchildren and 3 great great grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her husband of 50 years, Steven, and partner of 10 years, Joseph Farber.

Her favorite saying was “Man plans, God laughs.”

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Naples Holocaust Museum (Oral/Visual History Project), the Baker Senior Center, or Unity of Naples Spiritual Community


Sherry Schroeder

June 5, 2024, 4:54 pm

She was precious–a real gem. We loved her spirit. She was one in a million. God Bless her and her family richly at this time.

Mary Beth and Jeff Crum

June 9, 2024, 8:09 pm

Dear Debby and family
Although we didn’t get the privilege of knowing your mom if she was anything like you then whomever did get to know her was blessed. May you take solace in the wonderful times you all had together. How lucky she was to have such an extended family. May her memory be a blessing to you and your family.
Love, Jeff and Mary Beth

Beverly Kirby

June 9, 2024, 8:19 pm

Lilly will be missed by so many. I wish her family peace and send my love.
I will miss her so much and our conversations Lilly was one in a million!

Bonnie Cowhey

June 9, 2024, 8:50 pm

Her spirit, work ethic, kindness and her lovely smile have passed down to her children, grandchildren
and those who care about her. They have been truly blessed. A life well lived. She is at peace now. ❤️

Frank & Mike

June 10, 2024, 11:27 am

A beautiful lady, a long and fulfilling life, loved and cherished never to be forgotten.
Frank and Mike

Mary Gerak

June 10, 2024, 6:47 pm

Debby, your amazing role model. Celebrate her!

Kelly Atkins

June 10, 2024, 6:50 pm

I feel grateful to have felt her spirit! My heart is filled with love for those who loved Lilly! How lucky we all are ✨

Eden Duke

June 10, 2024, 6:50 pm

Lily was one of strongest woman I have ever met. She will be missed. Sending love to you all!

Barbara M Wolff

June 10, 2024, 8:00 pm

Dearest Debby & Family,
So very sorry to see this, know it’s going to be difficult for you! Lilly will always be taking care
of you just in a different way!
Always, Barbie

Sara Peavey Bradley

June 10, 2024, 8:49 pm

I wish I could have known her more what a legacy. Feeling this loss. My heart is with everyone.

Gaye mack

June 10, 2024, 8:54 pm

I only met Lilly once, but she was one of those people you never forget the lasting impression they have on you-what a blessing she was for all who knew her well. Sending love & much light to you, Debbie, Michelle, and your entire family. Gaye

Dave Carlson

June 10, 2024, 9:24 pm

Dear Debby,
I am sorry for the loss of your mother. She certainly enjoyed life and had a great spirit, and served as an inspiration to all, and she will be missed. Best wishes to you and your family.
—Dave Carlson

Chris Conti

June 10, 2024, 10:51 pm

Dear Debby and family, I met Lilly when Ambrosia first opened in Fox River Grove. I remember her great smile and she seemed to be overseeing all the activity in the patisserie! Wishing you much comfort in all the great memories you’ll have of her. Much love, Chris Conti

Jean Johnson

June 10, 2024, 11:49 pm

My entire family loved your Mom. I remember my Father speaking so highly of Lilly. She will always be one of my favorite people I have been graced to meet and know. Heaven has one new amazing angel to watch over her flock.
Prayers to you and your family. Love to you all.

Theresa Pankonin

June 10, 2024, 11:57 pm

With Heartfelt Love in Family so fortunate to have known Lilly. Peace & Grace Be With You All. Theresa Fox-Pankonin

Monica Romero

June 11, 2024, 12:49 am

This is my grandma the main person that gave me the strength to overcome my disabilities and move on with life.
I love you grandma so much and I’ll forever miss you until we see each other again.

Mario Lara

June 11, 2024, 1:55 am

Dearest Debra and family
I am very sad to hear this news , Our deepest condolences to you and your family ,
I had the pleasure to meet your mom and dad and they were both very special ,
May she rest in Peace


Mario Lara and Family

Robert Greco

June 11, 2024, 6:19 pm

Dear Debby and Family,
I had the pleasure of being Lillie’s neighbor for the past couple of years. She was great to talk to. For her age she was hip to everything and truly the matriarch of Veronawalk. She will be missed dearly.. Keep the faith

Deborah Muenzer-Doy

June 11, 2024, 10:03 pm

Michelle and family. Throughout the years I have heard so many stories about Lilly and was always in awe of her strength and spirit. Even though I never met her, I loved hearing stories about Lilly. I know she will be missed terribly.

May her memory be a blessing.
Love Deborah


June 11, 2024, 10:45 pm

What a life. I wish that I had talked to her at length.
Thinking of you be strong.

Karen and Donn Kelly

June 12, 2024, 1:03 am

Oh, Deb….
Your mom. I can’t say I’d ever met anyone quite like her. Just the few times I saw her at Ambrosia when she came up to visit, she just filled the room with her beauty, grace, smile, feisty sparkling eyes. She had a special aura about her and such a love of life, and if you and your family. You always spoke so lovingly about her, Deb and I know you share a spirit and love of life! May all you were to each other help to gently sustain you now. Blessings on your way, Lilly.

Karen and Donn Kelly

June 12, 2024, 1:09 am

Dear Deb and family,
What a wonderful, beautiful, spunky, graceful, interesting, kind woman Lilly was, with sparkling eyes and such an engaging smile. I remember the several times I met her at Ambrosia when she came to visit, how you both share a contagious spirit and love of life! May all the love and memories you’ve shared and cherished together help gently sustain you now. Blessings on your way, Lilly. What a woman!

Michelle Herrell

June 12, 2024, 2:08 am

Dear Deb and family,
My deepest condolences.
I knew Lilly, primarily, from the many beautiful stories shared by her family. I had much respect and admiration for her.
Your Mom raised amazing children, and that speaks to the type of person she was and how much love was present.
I wish you all peace and comfort during this time.
Sending so much love,


Susan & David Olsson

June 13, 2024, 7:55 pm

Dear Debby & Family,

Please accept our condolences on the loss of your marvelous mother & grandmother. The Lord gave her a long life and what a blessing that was. I’m so thankful you were able to spend more time with her after your retirement. What treasured memories you all will have to remember longer after she is gone. Lord bless you all. Susan & David Olsson

Victoria Thompson

June 18, 2024, 12:35 pm

Dearest Debra and family,

What a wonderful mom, so, so lucky to have had her in your lives. She was one of my favorites, so many great memories of your parents. Sending thoughts and prayers.

Vicky Thompson

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