Lee F. Young Jr.

Lee Franklin Young, age 92, of Lawrence, KS, passed away August 30 at his residence in Neuvant House surrounded by his three children and beloved granddaughter.

A funeral service will be held at 5pm Thursday, September 6, at First Presbyterian Church, 2415 Clinton Pkwy, Lawrence, with Rev. Kent Winters-Haselton officiating.

Lee was born in Syracuse, NY, to Lee Franklin Young and Helen Marie Young, on November 3, 1925. After graduating from Nottingham High School in Syracuse, Lee enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served as a sonar technician on a destroyer escort in WWII. He received a Purple Heart for injuries sustained in a kamikaze attack during the Battle of Okinawa.

After the war, Lee attended Syracuse University on the GI Bill. He received a BA in American Studies in 1950. While working on the school yearbook he met the love of his life, Shirley Ann Evans. They married in Shirley’s hometown of Ho-Ho-Kus, NJ, on June 30, 1950. The young couple lived in and loved New York City, but relocated to Kansas City, MO, when Lee accepted a job in advertising. Within a couple of years, Lee took a job in magazine production and moved his growing family to Lake of the Forest, Edwardsville, Kansas, where he said he spent his happiest years.

Lee and his family made Lawrence their home when he was hired as an instructor to teach journalism in the advertising sequence at KU in 1964. Following a longtime dream, he completed a Master’s in Journalism at the university in 1967. He became an assistant professor in 1968, an associate professor in 1970, and a full professor in 1975. In addition to teaching advertising, Lee developed a sequence in magazine journalism, and at various times taught in the news-editorial and radio-television areas. His administrative responsibilities included: Director of the Midwest Journalism Camp, Chairman of the University Daily Kansan Board, and Director of the William Allen White Foundation. During his tenure at KU, Lee received the 1967 Hillteacher award, the 1969 H.Bernard Fink award for excellence in teaching, and the Mortar Board teaching award. He was seven times a finalist for the senior class’ H.O.P.E. teaching award, and the first holder of the William Allen White Distinguished Teacher Professorship in 1985. Lee twice served as acting Dean of the Journalism School, 1969-70 and 1985-86. In 1985, he was named as Distinguished Teaching Professor of Journalism.

He was a member of St. Martin in the Fields Episcopal Church in Edwardsville, KS, where he served as a senior warden and a lay reader. He joined the Trinity Episcopal church in Lawrence, and later became active in the First Presbyterian Church. Following his retirement he enjoyed volunteering at church, the Lawrence Community Theater, and with Audio-Reader. He loved to play golf, watch the Royals and rarely missed a KU basketball game.

Lee is preceded in death by parents, Lee and Helen Young, his bride, Shirley Evans Young, his beloved friend and son-in-law, David Wiebe, great granddaughter, Madrona Hartford, and great grandson, Quinn Brady.

He is survived by his children: Leslie Young, Catherine Little (Rodney), and Kenneth Young, sister Gwendolyn Kratz (Bill), sister-in-law Myrene Hoge (Sterling Sorrel); grandchildren: Graham Farris (Kelly), Kathelyn Young, Mark Wiebe (Anne), and Chris Wiebe; and great grandchildren: William Farris, Noah Brady, Sorrel Hartford, Wren Hartford, and Amber Hartford. Lee also leaves behind several nieces and nephews as well as cherished friends Doni Mooberry and Eva Alley.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Neuvant House, 1216 Biltmore Dr., Lawrence, KS, 66049, or Heartland Hospice, 2231 SW Wanamaker Rd., S 202 Topeka, KS, 66614.

The family wishes to extend its deep gratitude to the staff at Neuvant House, who provided Lee with a loving home for the last three years of his life. Additionally, the support and services provided by the staff at Heartland Hospice made it possible for Lee to remain in the home he loved during the final weeks of his life.

The family is honoring Lee’s wish to have his body donated to the Department of Anatomy, University of Kansas Medical Center.

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27