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Fontana resident Carl Lee died on December 30, 2012 at the age of 87.
He is survived by Helen, his devoted wife of 64 years; sister Marge Meisels of Berkeley, CA; son Richard of Concord, CA; daughters Barbara Jones of Fontana; Marilyn of La Verne, CA; Janet Olivas of Mystic, CT; and five grandchildren. Carl is preceded in death by his son David.
Carl Lee, Jr. was born in Chicago, IL to Carl Lee Sr. and Lucy Elliot Lee. Carl grew up on the south side of Chicago, graduating from Morgan Park High School in 1943.
After an abbreviated attendance at Purdue University, Carl worked in Chicago as a ship welder during the war and subsequently at Republic Steel from 1945 to 1951, during which he obtained his pilot's license in pursuit of his passion for flying.
He married Helen Louise Webster of Tulsa, OK in 1948. Hired by the Kaiser Steel Corporation as an electrician's apprentice, Carl moved with Helen and first-born Richard to Fontana in 1951. Carl worked at the Kaiser Steel until his retirement as an electrical maintenance foreman in 1980.
During his 61 years as a resident of Fontana, Carl volunteered his time and talents to Fontana Community Church, the Boy Scouts, the Fontana YMCA, the Fontana Police Department and the Red Cross (to which he donated over 15 gallons of blood during his adult life).
As an avid Ham radio operator and as an active member of the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Services (RACES), Carl helped Fontana and the Inland Empire prepare for a major earthquake and other disruptive emergencies.
Carl enjoyed fabricating problem-solving household innovations, Big Band music and novels by Tom Clancy. He had a particular fondness for black licorice, silent movie comedies and weekly lunches with former Kaiser Steel colleagues after his retirement.
All who knew Carl will miss his abiding patience, steadfast sense of responsibility, honest intelligence and his unassuming decency.
Published in San Bernardino Sun on January 13, 2013