Deland - Fleming Lee (aka Fleming Lee Blitch) age 79, Deland, passed away December 24, 2012 in Gainesville, FL.

The eldest of three sons of Loonis and Jean Fleming Blitch, he was born in St. Augustine and was a descendent of pre-statehood pioneers. His great grandfather moved from Southeast Georgia and settled near Ft. King. His grandfather, S. H. Blitch, was a pioneering physician and rancher in Ocala and Blitchton and a four-term Representative to the Florida legislature in the 1890's.

Fleming graduated from P.K. Yonge School in Gainesville and earned his B.A. with Honors and M.A. in English from the University of Florida. He was Instructor of English at Washington State University, Miami University of Ohio, and Florida Atlantic University prior to spending nine years as a freelance writer in the U.S. and England where he co-authored novels in The Saint series with Leslie Charteris and scripts for "The Saint" TV series.

His published novels include The House on Felicity Street, The Omega Operation, and children's books, The Last Dragon and The Amazing Adventures of Peter Grunt, the Parents' Magazine annual award winner. He was a Bread Loaf Writers' Conference Fellow.

Fleming earned his J.D. degree from the UF College of Law. He served as Judicial Aide to Judge James Alderman in the 4th District Court of Appeal prior to practicing in Washington, D.C., litigating First Amendment cases and prosecuting appeals to the U.S. 5th, 11th, and District of Columbia Circuits, and the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1987 he became Bureau Chief and Assistant State Attorney General of the Criminal Appeals Office in Daytona Beach, then served as Judicial Aide to Judge Winifred Sharp, 5th DCA. He entered private practice for four years with Kinsey Vincent Pyle, P.A., before returning to the 5th DCA until his retirement in 2003.

Fleming is survived by his wife of 29 years, Julia Boone Lee; son Davis of California; daughter Virginia of North Carolina; and brothers Riley Blitch of Gainesville and Gordon Blitch of Winter Park.

A private family service will be held at a later date.

Published in Gainesville Sun from Jan. 13 to Jan. 14, 2013