Lee J. Wallace

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Wallace, Lee J.
died in Scottsdale, Arizona on March 10th, 2014. He was born on October 8th, 1921 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He was energetic, independent and full of optimism right up to the end. He had a passionate love for his family, politics, history, sports and especially Michigan State University Spartans (Go Green!), classical music, opera, science and technology. He had a hopeful interest in the future of the world and humanity. He graduated with his BA from University of Minnesota in 1949, and his Masters of Social Work from the University of Nebraska in 1951. He was a social work pioneer, and during his illustrious career he worked for the Veteran's Administration and then created one of the country's first community mental health programs, the Lansing Consultation Center, in Michigan during the 1960s. He retired as Regional Director, Community Mental Health Services for the Michigan Department of Mental Health in 1983. In his retirement, he moved to Arizona and he remained as active as he was during his working life, volunteering at the Mayo Clinic and the Mustang Library, traveling, playing bridge with friends and spending time with his life-long companion, Bernice, his wife of 68 years. He was a proud veteran, serving in the United States Army Air Corp, during World War II as an airplane mechanic and later a photographic developer for aerial reconnaissance missions at the Army Air Corp base in Laredo, TX. At the end of the war, he served briefly in Saipan. After the war, he continued his duty in the US Air Force Reserves, achieving the rank of Captain. Lee was a member of Congregation Beth Israel in Scottsdale. Lee loved life, good food, funny jokes, old movies, hats, and most of all, he loved his family. He is succeeded by his beloved wife, Bernice, his children Robert (Ellen), Nancy, Steven (Tina); his grandchildren, Lindsey, Casey (Brooke), Hillary, Joshua, Matthew; and his great granddaughter, Samantha. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Desert Botanical Gardens in Phoenix, Arizona where Lee spent many happy times communing with nature and enjoying the beautiful Arizona sunsets; or to another of his favorite organizations, the Nature Conservancy. A Memorial Service is scheduled for 9:30am, Friday, March 14th, 2014, at Green Acres Family Room, 401 N. Hayden Road, Scottsdale, Arizona 85257. Please go to www.greenacresmortuary.net to celebrate the life of Lee J. Wallace. For all who knew and loved him, he will be forever missed.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Mar. 14, 2014
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