Lopezian Ed (Bucky) Lee passed away March 1, 2013 at the age of 83 from complications with pneumonia. Affectionately known to his multitude of family and friends as Bucky (usually spoken in the same breath with one of his beloved dogs, Bubbah Lee), he died peacefully whileunder Hospice care at the Birchview Memory Care Community in Sedro-Wooley where he and his wife of 62 years, Pat Lee,have been living together since they moved from their beautiful Lopez farm on Kjargaard Road almost exactly one year ago.
Bucky brought his family to Lopez Island in 1984 after retiring from an illustrious career as the General Car Foreman of the Santa Fe Railroad yard in San Bernardino, where he had raised his family of three daughters and a son, and was also proud of his 50 year membership in the San Bernardino Masonic Lodge.
Settling into the Lopez Island farm they had purchased in 1975, Bucky quickly fell back on his roots growing up as a farm boy in Moberly Missouri and added the skills, knowledge and love for machinery he had gleaned from over 30 years as a railroad man to successfully manage his beautiful 40 acres of center island prime dirt. Recently, the Lee Farm was described by county agriculturalists as one of the best tended acreages they have ever seen in the islands, this even a full two years after Bucky had become unable to tend to his beloved cattle and crops.
There is most likely not a person on Lopez that Bucky has not helped or touched, be it cutting, raking and bailing your own hay (which he did throughout the island and could most often be seen driving his John Deer to the next field that needed tending) or delivering some of his own alfalfa to your hungry herd, or pounding nails into a remodel under the watchful eye of his son-in-law Pastor (now) Don Poole or driving a ten wheeler unloading the gravel barge at Odlin Park. But perhaps you best remember him from one of his most favorite of pastimes, cracking jokes with the cashiers at the market. When Bucky approached, you could always count on a smile and a friendly word, whether you needed it or not.
Bucky is already being missed by his surviving wife, Pat, daughters Connie Kyser, Vici Poole and Kim Kramer (all Lopez residents) and son Jerry Lee, as well as thirteen grandchildren and three great grandchildren (with another one in the hopper, as Bucky would put it). A memorial service is planned for Saturday April 13, 11:30 am at the Lopez Cemetery (Center Church). Afterwards we invite you to join us at noon for one of Bucky’s favorite meals, biscuits and gravy, at the barn on the Lee Farm, 323 Kjargaard Road, Lopez Island. Be assured Bucky will be watching down on us, with Bubbah asleep as always on his knee, supremely content, as he should be, with a life well done.