Obituary of Paul I. Lee
Paul Irving Lee, 94, of Woodstock, CT, died on Friday, September 14, 2018. He was the widower of Louise Lee (nee Stevens), to whom he was happily married for 64 years. Paul was born in Newton, MA in 1924 to Hope Christina Lee (nee Jacobson) and Leopold Louis Lee. His childhood was spent in Watertown, MA where he graduated from Watertown High School. He subsequently graduated from Harvard College, Class of 1946, with a B.S. in Chemistry. Grandson of a Civil War veteran and son of a WW I veteran, he served in the U.S. Army as a 2nd Lieutenant during World War II. In 1951 he and Louise moved to Stratford, CT. He worked for the next 35 years at Raybestos-Manhattan, Inc., retiring as National Chief Sales Engineer.
During the years in Stratford when Paul and Louise were raising their three children, Paul played a leading role in civic and church affairs, serving variously as Moderator, Head of the Board of Deacons, and Head of the Nominating and Search Committees at the First Congregational Church; Scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 172; member of the First Ecclesiastical Society; President of the Harvard Club of Southern Connecticut; and many other activities.
In 1987 Paul and Louise relocated to Woodstock, CT, where Paul continued to pursue a broad range of interests. He was an active member of the First Congregational Church of Woodstock, the Audubon Society, and the Romeos. He and Louise travelled the world widely until recent years, visiting every continent other than Antarctica, often on birding expeditions and frequently with their dear friends Jim and Ella McCullough. Above all else Paul was a fervent follower of Harvard athletics, especially football and women’s and men’s ice hockey. At the time of his death Paul had seen more Harvard-Yale football games than any other living person.
Paul was a true renaissance man. He was an expert birder, made honey and lip balm from his own beehives, wove Nantucket Baskets and crafted Shaker boxes, climbed all 46 mountains in New Hampshire over 4,000 feet high, went on fossil digs in Montana and China, and raised and preserved cranberries. In raising his children he set the absolute highest ethical and moral standards. His family and everyone who came in contact with Paul knew he was a force of nature.
Paul is survived by his son Jeff Lee and his partner Karen Outerson of Norwalk, CT; his daughter Jeanne Landin and her husband the Rev. Kenneth Landin of Franklin, MA; and his son the Rev. Dr. Jonathan Lee and his wife the Rev. Bridget Fidler of Hartford, CT. He is also survived by his grandchildren Jonathan Lee, Andrew Lee, Katie Grenon, Marta Finewood, Samuel Dean-Lee, and Skyler Dean-Lee, as well as great-grandchildren Nova Grenon, Quinn Finewood, and Kaiya Finewood. All friends are cordially invited to a Memorial Service at the First Congregational Church of Woodstock, CT on Saturday October 27, 2018 at 1:00 PM with a reception to follow. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Paul and Louise Lee Education Endowment Fund at the Connecticut Audubon Society in Pomfret (P.O. Box 11, Pomfret, CT 06259) or the Paul and Louise Lee Memorial Fund at the First Congregational Church of Woodstock (543 Route 169, Woodstock CT 06281). Share a memory at www.smithandwalkerfh.com