Lloyd and Shirley Lee

May 24, 2022


Lloyd and Shirley Lee, longtime Crookston Central High School educators, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, May 24, 2022, at Amira Choice in Plymouth, MN. They had moved to Plymouth a year ago to be near their daughter, Sondi, and her family. Shirley passed away in the early morning hours and Lloyd in the evening. They shared their lives together for over 63 years and will now share eternity.

Lloyd Norman Lee, 87, was born on August 4, 1934 in rural Roseau County to Ole and Rose Lee.  He graduated from Badger High School in 1952.  Lloyd then attended college at Bemidji State University, graduating in 1956 with a B.S. degree in music education.  In 1964, he received his M.S. degree from the University of North Dakota.

Shirley Violet (Brekke) Lee, 88, was born on May 5, 1934 in Fosston, MN to Lloyd and Gertrude Brekke.  She graduated from Fosston High School in 1953, and in 1957 earned her B.S. degree in education from Bemidji State University.

Lloyd’s teaching career began in Verndale, MN where he taught band, choir and elementary vocal music.  He served in the U.S. Army National Guard from 1957-1964 and taught vocal music in Deer River, MN.  Shirley’s teaching career began in Parker’s Prairie, MN from 1957-1958 where she taught science and physical education. 

On December 22, 1958, college sweethearts, Lloyd and Shirley, were married in Fosston, MN.  They then taught together in Stephen, MN for two years.

In 1960, they accepted positions to teach in Crookston, MN and taught until their retirement in 1994. Over the years, Lloyd taught Band (and Orchestra for 15 years) and Shirley taught 7th-9th grade science, American History and Biology.  Shirley also had the honor of serving as interim high school principal in 1984.

Lloyd and Shirley were very proud of their students.  Lloyd was especially proud of the students in band and their many accomplishments and awards including marching in the 1991 Cotton Bowl Parade on New Year’s Day, 1988 Kentucky Derby Parade, and at Disney World in 1985 and 1994.  He also enjoyed leading them at many Potato Bowl Parades in Grand Forks, performing half-time shows at the Winnipeg Blue Bombers professional football games, and having the marching band star in a TV commercial for Old Dutch Potato Chips in 1984.

Shirley enjoyed being a Sunday school teacher, and member of WELCA and the Martha Bible Study.  She was also a past President of Woman’s Club.  Lloyd enjoyed playing in the Minnesota 9th District American Legion Band, singing in the Trinity Lutheran Men’s Chorus, and serving as a certified music adjudicator for the Minnesota State High School League.

Lloyd and Shirley enjoyed golfing, hunting, attending concerts, musicals and athletic events.  Their greatest joy was attending the sporting events and concerts of grandsons, Thor and Rolf. They loved being “snowbirds” and spent 20 wonderful winters in Gulf Shores, Alabama.

Loving family members include their daughter and son-in-law, Sondi and Jeff Johnson of Plymouth, MN, and grandsons, Thor and Rolf Johnson.  Lloyd’s survivors include a brother and sister-in-law, Otto and Ruth Lee of Baudette, MN.  Shirley’s survivors include her brother and sister-in-law, Jerald and Ann Brekke of Maryville, MO.

Lloyd and Shirley were preceded in death by their parents and Lloyd’s brothers: Nels, Robert, and Pastor Carl; and Lloyd’s sisters: Martha, Anna and Olga.

A Memorial Service honoring the lives of Lloyd and Shirley Lee will be held at 11:00am, Monday, June 6, 2022, at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Crookston, MN with The Rev. Greg Isaacson, officiating. Visitation with their family will be at the Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home on Sunday from 5-7:00pm, with a prayer service and the sharing of memories at 7:00pm. Visitation will continue at the Church on Monday for one hour prior to their funeral. Burial will take place in Oakdale Cemetery, Crookston. All services will be livestreamed by going to the obituary page for Lloyd and Shirley at and clicking on the prompt to view.

In lieu of flowers memorials may given c/o Sondi Johnson to the Lloyd and Shirley Lee Bemidji State University Scholarship Fund, Trinity Lutheran Church Foundation, Pirate Fine Arts Booster Club, or the Parkinsons Foundation.

Messages of condolence may be sent to Sondi, Jeff, and family at  


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June 5, 2022

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home
615 S. Minnesota St.
Crookston, MN 56716

Prayer Service
June 5, 2022

7:00 PM
Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home
615 S. Minnesota St.
Crookston, MN 56716

Memorial Service
June 6, 2022

11:00 AM
Trinity Lutheran Church (Bemidji, Crookston, MN)

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