Roberta Joy Lee, 80, of Kooskia, Idaho, died Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018, at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, Idaho.
Roberta Joy Hanson Lee was born Dec. 2, 1937, in Cimarron, N.M., to Vernon Lenn Hanson and Pearl Alma Burk Hanson, joining her older brother, Gerald. The family moved to Creswell, Ore. and she graduated from Eugene High School in 1955. She married Edgar Barnes in 1955 and they had two daughters, Rhonda Joy Barnes and Patti Lynn Barnes Kelly. They divorced in 1959 and she and her girls relocated to Kooskia, Idaho, where her parents were currently living.
On July 8, 1961, she married the love of her life, Robert E. Lee and they have been gracing each other’s lives for the last 56 years. In 1963, their daughter Renita Eileen Lee was born.
Joy was not only a loving wife and mother, but she had a deep love and commitment to mankind, especially her community. She was a member of the Kooskia Rebekah Lodge for 51 years, serving as Noble Grand several years and also as the President of the Rebekah Assembly of Idaho. She also served as the Theta Rho Girls Advisor for more than 30 years.
Joy had always been a very community-minded person, but she began her intense work to better the community she loved when she was elected mayor of Kooskia, but her efforts did not end with her term. Through her involvement with the Kooskia Revitalization Committee, she employed her grant-writing abilities to obtain millions of dollars in funding for projects which include, but are not limited to, the Emergency Services Building, the Highway 12 Kiosk area, the development and amenities of the City Park, the Main Street sidewalks, storm drains, lights and planters, the new water and sewer system, and was instrumental in obtaining the new bridge into Kooskia.
She was honored by President Bush with a National Shining Star Award, in addition to numerous other awards and honors for her service to the community throughout the years.
Joy was an exceptional seamstress. She spent many hours sewing clothes for her daughters, oftentimes just from a picture in a catalog and has tailored and sewn clothes for many others throughout the years. Additionally, she has made hundreds of afghans, and other crocheted fancy work as gifts for the people in her life.
Hundreds of adults and children throughout the years have experienced tours of the "Santa Land" that she and Bob created at their home every Christmas season.
Joy is survived by her husband, Robert, at the family home they shared for more than 50 years; daughters, Rhonda, Patti, and Renita; grandchildren, Jeremy (Shelly) VonBargen, Eric (Heidi) York, Briana (Jeremy) Kaschmitter, Aaron (Hayley)Bruening, Tanner Haage, Chase Haage, and Jillian Hausladen; and 8 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents and brother.
A memorial service will be 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018, at Trenary Funeral Home in Kooskia. A covered dish dinner will follow at the Kooskia Rebekah Lodge.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.trenaryfuneralhome.com
Condolences are being received online.
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