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Lee F. Adams III

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Lee F. ADAMS, III Lee F. Adams perished in a climbing accident on Mount Rainier on Tuesday, July 27, 2010. The Mount Rainier climbing rangers believe, based on interviews and the plainly visible marks in the snow, that Lee's efforts to stop his rope-team's slide may well have saved the lives of his three fellow climbers, all of whom survived.

In his full life, Lee was always in motion. He brought and applied boundless energy and enthusiasm to his every pursuit, recreational and professional. Lee loved the mountains and was an avid mountaineer and back-country skier. He taught climbing with the Washington Alpine Club for 10 years, taught telemark skiing and served on ski patrols in Washington and California. Lee was well on his way to reaching his goal of summiting the 100 highest peaks in Washington. And, as if these pursuits were not enough, Lee also taught sailing at Seattle's Center for Wooden Boats and was a cyclist and runner with whom few could keep up.

Lee was no less accomplished in his academic and professional pursuits. Lee grew up in South Freeport, Maine, received his
B. A. in Biology from Middlebury College and earned his Ph.D. in Microbiology from Cornell University. In 1986, he moved out to Seattle and did his post-doctoral training in the Department of Microbiology at the University of Washington. After working as a Research Scientist with Novo-Nordisk in Davis, California, Lee returned to Seattle in 1997 to accept a position at Icos Corporation, where he became a Senior Scientist. In 2007, Lee joined Spaltudaq (nka Theraclone) as a Principal Scientist and, most recently, worked as a Research Scientist at the Institute for Systems Biology.

Perhaps most of all, Lee was a thoughtful and loyal friend, committed to staying in touch with old friends and gifted at cultivating new friendships. His grin was eager, his wit sharp, his heart genuine and his writing style in imitable. He was as enthusiastic, loyal and dependable as a friend as he was as a climbing partner.

Lee is survived by his mother, Evelyn S. Sawyer, his father, Lee F. Adams, Jr., his brother, Ellis, his sister, Dale, his special friend, Hannah Kettler, and a wide community of friends, all of whom love and miss him dearly.

In lieu of flowers and consistent with Lee's wishes, please consider a donation to the Nature Conservancy of Washington in Lee's memory.
Published in The Seattle Times on Aug. 1, 2010
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