Joseph Alfred Lee was born to Lawrence and Nellie Lee on August 31st, 1938, in St Paul, MN. His sister Karen and adopted brother Johnny completed their family, and they grew up in St. Paul in a loving home. Joe graduated from Johnson High School in 1955 at 16 years old. He then studied at the U of M for two years before completing his accounting degree at Globe Business School). What began as a career in accounting at Harzell Mfg, took a significant turn when Joe was selected to be trained as a Computer Programmer in 1967. He continued to pursue Computer Programming with various companies before launching his own business creating custom manufacturing software in the late 1970’s. Joe worked in computer consulting up to the age of 80.
Joe was a successful businessman, but he always valued family and relationships. He met his first wife, Helen, at a fellowship meeting and they married a few years later in April of 1960. They had three children together and many grand and great grandchildren. Their family life was rich with wonderful community and friendships. As Joe and Helen shared a strong faith, ministry and generosity were a hallmark of their lives. Joe took loving care of Helen in her final years until she went to be with the Lord in June 2016. After Helen’s passing, Joe was blessed to find love again. He reconnected with longtime family friend, Janice. They quickly fell in love and were married in January of 2017. Together they spent six beautifully happy years traveling, spending time with their combined families, and growing deeper in their faith.
On November 28th Joe was admitted to the hospital for kidney failure. His final days were a gift as Joe was surrounded by his wife, family, and friends. They shared special memories, music, and prayer together. He passed away on December 2nd.
Joe is preceded in death by his first wife Helen, his parents Lawrence and Nellie Lee and his brother Johnny Lee.
He is survived by many: his loving wife, Janice; sister, Karen Winter (Phil); children, Benjamin Lee (Ruth), Annette Gmyrek (Craig), and David Lee (Jody); grandchildren, Ryan, Stephanie, Annie, Josh, and Noah Lee, Kendra Gannucci (Jeremy), Brianne Olawore (Tobi), Tyler, Alissa, Bryce, and Andrew Gmyrek, Serena Hanson (Joshua), Daniel, Nellie, and Celeste Lee; great grandchildren, Poppy, Charlotte, and Elenor Gannucci, Asher and Maria Olawore, Remy Hanson; step children, Brian Kaufenberg, Angela Kaufenberg/Ristow, Matthew Kaufenberg (Harmony), Maggie Rokey (Shanna), Abigail Macy (John); step grandchildren, Jackson Olson, Jonas, Calvin, Walter, Penelope, and Oliver Ristow, Emily, James, David, Daniel, and Henry Kaufenberg, Charlotte, Caroline, Catherine and Harrison Macy, Kendra Angell (Dennis), Jaden (Riannon), Kurtis, Jenna, Kaleb, and Judson Allen; step great grandchildren Ezra, Micah, Margaret, and Grace Allen.
A Funeral Service will be held at 11 AM, on Saturday, December 17, 2022, at Crossroads Evangelical Covenant Church, 17445 Notre Dame St. NE, Forest Lake, MN. Visitation will be held 4-7 PM, on Friday, December 16, 2022, at Crossroads and will continue on Saturday an hour prior to the service at the church.