Christine ‘Chris’ Westwood Leach, 60, international model in the early ’80s

Christine "Chris" Westwood Leach (Courtesy of H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts)
Christine “Chris” Westwood Leach (Courtesy of H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts)

Christine “Chris” Westwood Leach, 60, passed away peacefully on November 23, 2015.

She was born in Richmond, Virginia to her mother, the late Westwood Wright Doyle, and James “Jimmy” Archibald Leach, III on December 31, 1954, New Year’s Eve. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her step-father, John “Johnny” H. Doyle, Jr.

She is survived by her sister, Dr. Elizabeth “Beth” Sawinski and her husband, Clint, and brother, James “Jay” Archibald Leach, IV. Her nieces Li Mei Sawinski and Micah Sawinski, and nephews Jake Sawinski, James Archibald Leach, V and Benjamin Matthew Leach also survive. Surviving paternal cousins include Bill Gatewood, Gail Gatewood Gillespie, and their mother, her aunt, JoAnne Leach Jones of Richmond along with Anne Baldwin Jamerson and Preston Baldwin. Maternal cousins include Beck Swanson, Brad Swanson, John Swanson, and Anne Swanson Bancroft and their parents, Anne and Chuck Swanson of Honolulu, Hawaii. Our family is especially thankful to Charles Syrek and her many friends that gave Chris support when she needed it the most.

Chris grew up at the Oceanfront, attended First Colonial High School, and lived her life like the New Year’s Eve child that she was. Her personality and physical stature was noticed by all. After attending modeling school in Florida, she was hired by Eileen Ford and quickly became one of the Ford Agency’s leading international models during the early ’80s. This is how Chris always wished to be remembered.

A service will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday November 28, 2015 at HD Oliver Funeral Home’s Chapel at 2002 Laskin Rd by the Rev. Kathleen Bobbitt. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Virginia Beach Volunteer Rescue Squad, 740 Virginia Beach Blvd, VB, VA 23451. Online condolences may be made to

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