Colchester - Lester "Les" H. Duncklee, of Colchester, formerly of Pawcatuck, passed away suddenly on March 21, 2014, surrounded by his loving family.
Les was born in New London, on April 23, 1941, the son of the late Christine (Geyer) Duncklee and Willis A. Duncklee.
He is survived by his best friend, soul mate, and fiancÃ©e, Lisa Stevenson of Colchester, and her children, Hannah and Connor Stevenson; his two sons, Christopher S. Duncklee of Hillsboro, N.H., and Jonathan L. Duncklee and his partner, Emily A. Kukulka, of Mystic; his adoring granddaughters, Christine Duncklee Bryer and her husband, Aaron, of Hancock, N.H., and Dr. Rachel Whitaker of Union City, Calif.; and grandson, Louis Nordlund of Hillsboro, N.H. Les will also be missed by friend, Alex Fearnley and former wife, Juliana Woodworth, of Florida.
Those closest to Les will always be thankful for his constant support and encouragement. His motto of living with a positive mental attitude will forever be etched in their hearts.
President of L.H. Duncklee Refrigeration, Inc., now known as Duncklee, Inc. Cooling & Heating, Les was recently honored by the Vice President Jonathan, at the company's 40th anniversary as its founder in 1973. He learned his trade in the HVAC business while proudly serving in the U.S. Navy from September 1959 to October 1963. Les was also a New London County State Marshal since 1995.
As the act of giving was one of Les's most admirable traits, he contributed to a multitude of organizations which kept him strongly connected to his community. He was a brother of the Masonic Coastal Lodge #57 of Stonington, a brotherhood now shared with Christopher; past president of the Stonington Rotary Club, past president of the Chamber of Commerce of Southeastern Connecticut in the 1980s, past president of the CHCC (Connecticut Heating and Cooling Contractors Association), and a recipient of the Paul Harris Award. Les served on The Stonington Water Pollution Control and Democratic Town Committee and was recently elected as the incoming president of Stonington Rotary for this upcoming year. He held the honor of Eagle Scout, a shared achievement with Connor. Les's life was full of adventure, and he enjoyed experiences far and wide. He always said, "The world is small; it's only a plane ride to anywhere." Les also loved riding his Harley-Davidson. Many of Les's favorite memories were also created at his family lakeside cabin in Hillsboro, N.H.
Calling hours will be from 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, March 27, at the Mystic Funeral Home, Route 1, 51 Williams Ave., Mystic. Coastal Lodge No. 57 A.F. & A.M. and the Worshipful Master announces with deep sorrow the death on March 21, of Brother Lester H. Duncklee, a member of this Lodge for 43 years. A Masonic memorial service will be held at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 27, at the funeral home. All Brothers are urged to attend. A celebration of Les's life will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, March 28, at the funeral home followed by a graveside service with military honors at the Elm Grove Cemetery, Route 27, Mystic.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Foundation of the Rotary Club of Stonington, PO Box 304, Stonington, CT 06378.
Please visit www.mysticfuneralhome.com
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Published by The Day on Mar. 25, 2014.