Benjamin Franklin Lee III died on Easter Sunday morning, surrounded by his family. Ben is survived by his wife of sixty years, Jane Overman Lee and by three of his four children. His death was preceded by his eldest daughter, Mary Bruce (Brucie) Lee in 2014. Ben’s surviving children are Gaye Lee Stewart and husband, Michael, of Raleigh; Benjamin Franklin Lee IV and wife, Allyson, of Wake Forest; and Elizabeth Jane (Betsy) Lee of Burlington. He has seven grandchildren: Sarah Stewart Starr and husband, Ben; Emily Stewart Williamson and husband, Stephen; John Michael Stewart and Anna Stewart McLamb and husband, Michael; Benjamin Franklin Lee V; John Forrest Lee; and William Brooks Lee. Ben also has four great-grandchildren: Mary Austin Starr; Payton Elizabeth Starr; Benjamin David Starr II; and Natalie Jane Williamson.
Following a forty-year career in textiles, Ben retired and took courses in horticulture. He also spent eleven years assisting the Village of Brookwood with transportation for residents. He and Jane joined Front Street United Methodist Church in Burlington in 1963 and remain active members. He was active in many aspects of church life but especially with the wheelchair ministry and with the Scouting program. For his outstanding work in developing the lives of children and youth, he was awarded the Cross and Flame recognition from Front Street UMC. Ben was in Scouting from a young age, himself an Eagle Scout and a member of the Order of the Arrow. He was an Assistant Scout Master for Troop 17 and chaired the Alamance County Eagle Board from 1986 until 2005.
Ben’s hobbies were woodworking and spending time at Emerald Isle and Lake Gaston with his family. He loved to travel and he and Jane visited many of our country’s national parks. He was a fun and loving Dad, Grandad and GreatGrandad.
The Lee family plans to celebrate Ben’s life with a private service at the church. Memorial contributions can be made to Front Street United Methodist Church, 126 South Fisher Street, Burlington NC 2715, or to Hospice AuthoraCare of Burlington, 814 Chapel Hill Road, Burlington NC 27215.
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