Duane Robert Lee
April 5, 1955 – July 7, 2019
Duane Robert Lee was born April 5, 1955 to Norman Lee and Winona Ruby in West Hyattsville, Maryland. He graduated from Gaithersburg High School in 1973 and accompanied his mother and sister to Houston.
New to the city and not wanting to over-load his Mother’s budget, Duane found himself walking the hallway of Memorial City Mall and into the United States Armed Services Recruiting Office. Duane proudly served our country from 1973 – 1977 in the Air Force as a Radio Communications Operator with expertise as a Vietnamese Translator. His service took him from California, to Thailand, to the Pentagon. Duane often shared stories of his last year in service as a special courier at the Pentagon. And of course as a member of their softball team…pitcher ? Honorable discharge brought him back home to Texas where he became a Houston Cougar!
While in Thailand, Duane first bowled ten pins: four lanes with pinboys. Arriving at U of H, he needed to find a sport so he wandered into the “basement” and found a group of guys enjoying the sport of bowling. This also was the beginning of many long friendships. Duane managed to graduate U of H with a degree in Marketing. He worked during this time and has told many stories about his days of selling “shoes to ladies” at Margo’s LaMode. His “dream job” involving sports at Barcelona’s Sporting Goods (yes fans, sports has always flowed through his veins). He landed his first career with Warner Lambert and enjoyed “selling drugs” legally! Pharmaceutical sales – including all the great stuff: Listerine, Lubriderm, Schick Razors…….
About this time, Duane’s heart was captured by a young lady, Delise Klein. Duane and Delise were married in May 1982. The next several years their love and family grew giving us the gifts of Jaclyn and Cory. Eventually the winds of change blew strong and the couple went their separate ways. Duane made a career change as well, entering the Oil and Gas Industry. He spent several years at Welker Engineering. His final career move brought him to Siemens Industry.
Family was the center of Duane’s world. He was either at the ball field with Cory and Jaclyn, at the bowling center, or at home being “goofy Daddy”. Where you found Duane – you found Cory and Jaclyn. Bowling also continued to be his game. He won numerous championships and accolades. He was inducted into the Houston Bowling Hall of Fame in January 1998. The lasting friendships that started at U of H continued through many of the bowling centers: Emerald, Copperfield, and Palace Lanes. Palace Lanes also brought Duane face-to-face with the last love of his life: Linda Schmidlin. Linda and Duane were married in April 1999 and over the next 20 years traveled the journey of raising teenagers, dealing with aging parents, dog children, children in college, loss of parents, adult children, children getting married, sickness & health of each other, puppy dogs, Corvette cars, early retirement, going back to work, and all the roller-coasters that life provides. The roller-coaster ride was together…up one hill and down the next …but oh what a wonderful ride.
Their final pleasure was becoming grandparents in 2018 with the birth of Ms. Hazel Rose Lee. Did we mention Duane was a family man? Well…..Ms. Hazel Rose Lee stole that Grand Daddy’s heart. He was so proud and so happy to have celebrated her 1st birthday in June! In addition to his blood family, Duane had a heart big enough to hold all the people he met during the life the Lord provided to him. Duane’s family included his work family, his bowling family, his Corvette family, his car-club family, and everyone in between. He was a gentle giant with a teddy bear hug whenever needed. In death, Duane continues to give love. Life Gift was able to recover and use both corneas, as well as skin and bones to benefit 60 people. Duane is survived by his wife, Linda Lee. Daughter Jaclyn Lee Blaschke (& Charles). Son: Cory Duane Lee (& Bailey plus Hazel). Sister: Donna Machemehl. Niece: Beth Elberson (& Aaron). Nephew: John Machemehl. His boxer fur-children: CJ, Shadow, and Phoenix. Plus a world full of relatives and friends. Duane left us on July 7, 2019.
Flowers welcome or contributions to Houston Boxer Rescue, Fort Bend Child Advocates, St. Jude or charity of your Choice.
- Reception Sunday, July 14, 2019
- Memorial Service Sunday, July 14, 2019
Duane Robert Lee
July 12, 2019
To Linda and Family, Please accept our Heartfelt condolences on your loss. Duane was a thoughtful and caring manager, who made my work an enjoyable endeavor. He will be deeply missed. God Bless the Lee Family.
July 11, 2019
I met Duane just a short few years ago when I joined the San Jacinto Corvette Club. Duane and Linda are pillars in the club, he led several memorable events that I was so happy to get to participate in. The story of his life was so up lifting and I pray all that loved him so.
Mona Lisa Wilson
July 9, 2019
Deepest sympathy and love to you Linda!! Thoughts and prayers for you and your family!! John and I will miss Duane more than you know. I am so glad I was able to sit will you and Duane at the rodeo when we saw George Straight!!
Mona Lisa and John Wilson