|Birth: ||Sep. 17, 1929|
|Death: ||Oct. 4, 2011|
Carolyn Martin Rhodes Lee, born September 17,1929, died October 4,2011 at age 82. Services for Mrs. Lee will be held Wednesday, October 12, 2011 at 2:00 at Fairview Baptist Church, Columbus, MS with Lowndes Funeral Home directing.
She was born in Bluefield, West Virginia to parents Helen Baker Martin Rhodes from Bluefield and Joseph Douglas Rhodes from Rhodes, Louisiana-a plantation near New Orleans.
Carolyn grew up in a large Victorian house in Bluefield that belonged to her grandfather, Dr. James Everett Martin, who was a physician at the University of Maryland in Baltimore. He moved to Bluefield to start a private practice and became the town's first mayor. Carolyn's mother, Helen, and two aunts, Mary and Virginia, as well as her grandmother Emma, all had college degrees. Her aunt Virginia was the mother of John Nash, the Nobel Prize winning mathematician and subject of the book and movie "A Beautiful Mind." John Nash is a researcher at Princeton and won the Nobel in Economic Science in 1994. Carolyn and John were first cousins and grew up as friends in Bluefield.
Carolyn attended Junior High, and most of High School in Baltimore, MD, and finished her senior year at Beaver High in Bluefield in 1947. She attended John Madison University in Harrisburg, VA in 1948, and McClain's Business School at Bluefield College in 1949.
Carolyn moved to Knoxville, TN at age 21 where she worked at the Southern Bell Telephone Co. for 12 years. She attended the University of Tennessee night school and studied accounting, was president of the Junior Business Girls Club, and later met her husband Jim Lee at YWCA dance.
She married James Allison Lee in 1959. They had one child in 1966, Mary Helen Lee, who was named after Carolyn's mother Helen and aunt Mary. Jim was the president of the Knoxville Lions Club and in 1969, Carolyn and Jim traveled to Tokyo, Japan, and Honolulu, Hawaii for Lions Club meetings, which she especially enjoyed.
Between 1974 and 1979 the family lived in Louisville, Kentucky where Carolyn studied real estate at the University of Louisville and worked as a real estate agent in Kentucky. They moved to Columbus, MS in 1979 where Carolyn was a real estate agent, and later worked at MUW, Sears, Security National Insurance, and as a Mary Kay cosmetics consultant.
Carolyn and Jim divorced in 1986, and she graduated from MUW in 1987 with a degree in accounting. She was the first president of the Columbus Lioness Club.
Carolyn has resided for years until her death at Trinity Retirement Home. She was also a longtime member of the Fairview Baptist Church. She loved gardening and always planted a lot of flowers where ever she lived, and kept many indoor plants, especially African violets.
Carolyn loved animals, especially her dogs Frisky and Spanky. Throughout her life she had an eye for fashion and was always a glamorous dresser. She was a good seamstress and made some of her own clothes for special occasions, as well as for Mary Helen when she was a child.
Carolyn's daughter, Mary Helen Lee, lives in Chicago, IL. Her sisters, Mickey Cooley and Susan Reaves, live in Glade Springs, Virginia and Sarasota, Florida. Over the past 20 years, one of Carolyn's closest friends has been Dennis Tedford, who she felt was "like an adopted son." Carolyn would often spend holidays with close friends Polly Jones and her daughter, Arlene Haggard and their family. She will be buried at the Jones family plot at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church Cemetery.
Throughout her recent illness, both Dennis Tedford and Anne Young have been her at her bedside and have been her family. We are so grateful for their love and support. Memorials may be made to the Columbus- Lowndes Humane Society, P.O. Box 85, Columbus, MS 39703.
Published in Commercial Dispatch on October 12, 2011
Pleasant Hill Baptist Church Cemetery
Created by: Dixie
Record added: Oct 17, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 78608896