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Charles Y. Lee


1922 - 2016 Obituary Condolences Gallery
February 21, 1922 - July 4, 2016
Charles Yuen Lee, 94, went to be with his Lord & Savior on Independence Day, passing away peacefully with his family by his side at his home in Seaside, CA.
Charles was born #1 son to Man Yuen and Jin Kim Gong Lee on February 21, 1922 in Willows, CA. When his mother died in 1926, the family moved to China where he spent most of his formative years attending Pui Ching, a Christian Baptist preparatory school in Canton. When the Japanese invaded China, the children were sent back to California, where Charles continued his education, eventually earning degrees from Sacramento City College (AA), UC Berkeley (BA in Art and Chinese, MA in Art) and, years later, San Jose State (MA in Education & Administration). In 1951 he moved to Monterey to become a Chinese instructor at the Defense Language Institute. On his 31st birthday in 1953, he married Anna at Mount Hermon, a Christian conference center in the Santa Cruz mountains, and in 1960, the family settled in Seaside. Charles was an artist, calligrapher, educator (language, art and math at various schools in Salinas and Monterey), founder of Chinese Bible Fellowship, Seaside Art Commissioner, Seaside's "Outstanding Adult Citizen of the Year" in 1980, organizer of Chinese arts & cultural events and field trips to Bay Area art museums, translator and interpreter for local agencies, president of AARP-Local Chapter 97 in 1993, and above all, a man of faith who was in constant action until bedridden due to a stroke in 2002, and yet he continued to be a witness for Christ.
He is survived by his devoted and beloved wife of 63 years Anna; loving children, Deborah (Kevan) Hall, Timothy (Francis) Lee, Rebekah (Scot) Sutherland, Joshua Lee, Joanna (Jeffrey) Bandy, and Jonathan Lee; cherished grandchildren, Rachel Sutherland, Michelle (Craig) Sakamoto, Ana Marie Lee, Hannah (Mike) Resig, Asia Hall, Christopher Bandy, Bethany Sutherland, Sarah Sutherland, Evan Hall, Danielle Bandy, Gabriella Lee, Seraphina Lee and Aristotle Lee; and precious great-grandson Eugene 'YuYu' Sakamoto. He is also survived by sister Ella Lum, half-sisters Mei Ling Liu and Susan Huey, half-brothers Ken, Joseph, David and Sammy Lee, and a host of other dear relatives and friends. He was predeceased by his siblings, Angel, Etta, George and Helen Lee.
A Celebration of Life will be held Sunday, 7/24, 4pm at Lighthouse Baptist Church in Seaside. Private burial was held at Mission Memorial Park, Seaside. In memory of Charles Lee, donations may be made to Mount Hermon Association (www.mounthermon.org/give). Romans 8:28
Published in the Los Angeles Times on July 21, 2016
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