Lee L. Richards, Jr., 93, of W. Pierce Street, Carlsbad, NM, passed away October 27, 2020 at Lakeview Christian Home. Visitation will be 1:30 PM 3:30 PM, Friday, October 30, 2020 and 9 AM noon, Saturday, October 31, 2020 at Denton-Wood Funeral Home. Funeral services are scheduled for 2 PM, Saturday, October 31, 2020 at Sunset Church of Christ with Terry McKean officiating. Interment will follow in Carlsbad Cemetery.
Lee was born August 13, 1927 in Dora, NM to Lee and Maude (Thomas) Richards, Sr. He grew up on a farm in Dora and graduated from high school in 1945. Lee took one semester at ENMU before joining the U.S. Army during WWII. In 1947, he began school at NMSU where he met Loree Russell. Lee and Loree married September 6, 1950 in Ft. Hancock, Texas. He taught two years in Grady, NM before moving to Carlsbad in 1953. Lee continued taking classes with teaching, earning a Masters in 1957. He taught at Hillcrest Elementary for nine years and after becoming principal, Lee served at Roosevelt, Puckett, Joe Stanley and Riverside Elementary Schools before retiring in 1989. He made it a practice to learn all of the students names by the first month of each school year and to his last days he often remembered students from all the years past. Lee was a member of International Reading Association and started the Carlsbad chapter. He was a charter member of Sunset Church of Christ where he was active and served as an elder for many years. Lee and Loree traveled extensively after retiring. He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Loree; grandson, Noah Freeman; brothers: Lynn, Paul and Mack Richards; sisters: Averil Burkett, Marie Richards, Pansy Evans and Rosemary Shackleford.
Survivors are his son, Gary Richards and wife, Karen; daughters: Ann Freeman and husband, Joe, Terrie McKean and husband, Terry; grandchildren: Clint McKean and fianc, Tish Chavarria, Kelly McKean and wife, Melissa, Kristie and Brandy Tow, Lindsey and Jennifer Tow, Matthew Richards and wife, Rachel, Rachel Fitzpatrick and husband, Brian; great-grandchildren: Austin Risher and fianc, Anissa Duarte, Ashley McKean and friend, Cole, Kaden McKean, Kyler McKean, Kenzi McKean, Emma McKean, Avalynn Richards, Asher Richards, Lincoln Fitzpatrick, Blair Fitzpatrick; great-great-granddaughter, Marlie Risher; sister-in-law, Berniece Richards and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorial contributions may be made to Lakeview Christian Home, 1905 W. Pierce Street, Carlsbad, NM 88220
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