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Obituary: Rhodes-Lee, Joan Faye “Joanie”

Fri., May 2, 2014

RHODES-LEE, Joan Faye “Joanie” Of Doylestown, PA, previously of Annville, PA, Harrisburg, PA, Frederick, MD and Spokane, WA, died on Tuesday, April 22nd at the age of 81.

Born in Cambridge, MA, Mrs. Rhodes-Lee was the daughter of the late Edgar Hall and Vera Sabins Beals.

At the age of 16, having studied piano and voice since the age of nine, Mrs. Rhodes-Lee performed with other talented teenagers on the Ted Mack Amateur Hour radio show, winning first prize — a trip to New York and a television appearance with Kay Armen, the popular singer.

In 1954, Mrs. Rhodes-Lee graduated from the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester, Rochester, NY with a Bachelor of Music degree in voice and piano, later received a teaching certificate from Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA.

After graduation from Eastman, Mrs. Rhodes-Lee performed as a swimmer and vocalist with Sam Snyder’s Water Follies, traveling extensively in the United States and several foreign countries.

In 1956 she met and married her first husband, Sherman L. Rhodes of Spokane, WA.

Married to Mr. Rhodes for more than 35 years, during which time she sang with Jim Baker’s Band and taught music both privately and in the public schools.

Mrs. Rhodes-Lee was widowed when her husband died following a serious illness.

In 1980, as the result of an automobile accident, Mrs. Rhodes-Lee suffered a spinal cord injury that left her an incomplete paraplegic; nevertheless she continued teaching privately, engaged extensively in volunteer activities and traveled widely with the aid of her long-time care giver, Veronica Nichols of Spokane.

Mrs. Rhodes-Lee is survived by her second husband, William Alden Lee, whom she married in 2005, her college sweetheart at the Eastman School of Music in the early 1950’s.

She is also survived by her son, Lee F. Rhodes of Las Vegas, NV.

A service of remembrance will be held on Saturday morning, May 10, 2014, at 10:00 a.m., at Wesley Enhanced Living, 200 Veterans Lane, Doylestown, PA.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Joanie’s name may be made to the Wesley Enhanced Living Foundation, 101 E County Line Rd, #200, Hatboro, PA 19040.



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