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On Tuesday, April 24, 2018 we said goodbye to our loving husband, father, grandfather Lee Allan Mongeon, 88, of Great Falls. A Memorial Service will be held Tuesday, May 15th at 1:00 PM in the Rose Room Chapel at Croxford Funeral Home.
Born May 7, 1929 in Worcester, MA to Ernest and Doris (Lawton) Mongeon, the family moved to Warwick, RI for his school years. After high school, he attended college at the University of RI, graduating with a BS degree in Physical Education in 1952. He immediately entered the USAF as an Aviation Cadet, and upon graduation was awarded pilots wings and a 2nd Lt. commission. Elizabeth “Terry” Quanstrom and Lee were married a short time later. They began their 65-year adventure together with Lee’s first military assignment in England.
Lee’s military career spanned two wars and a total of 26 years which were spent throughout the US, Europe and the Far East, including such diverse places as Christmas IS., Australia and Alaska. Flying experiences covered a wide range of missions and included tours of duty involving nuclear sampling, bombardment, electronic counter-measure activities and 135 combat reconnaissance missions in Vietnam. His career culminated in the command of a flying unit of 24 combat aircraft and the 560 supporting personnel. His final year of service was in the capacity as a Director of Logistics for an Air Division Headquarters. Lee’s retirement was effective on the 31st of May 1978 in the rank of Colonel, which he had held for 5 years.
After a year in which Lee and Terry owned and operated a wholesale sandwich business, they bought Holter Lake Lodge, Inc. It was a small summer resort that provided numerous recreational pursuits due to its location on a beautiful lake, and proximity to the Missouri River, a fly fisherman’s delight.
Very little military training served to prepare Lee and Terry for this second career in business. He believed the forgoing experiences in exercising common sense and usually sound judgement served to provide him with a well-balanced education in small business survival techniques.
Lee was described by a close military friend as being the nicest, wisest, studious, wildly fun commander of the skies, who “could make anyone dream”. Another said: “Lee was an example of what a real man should be…witty, smart, brave, strong, worldly, and yet funny, tender kind and loving”. A lifelong Yankee fan, he loved baseball. He enjoyed computers, wood working, reading, home repair, and especially spending time with his grandchildren.
Survivors include his loving wife of 65 years, Elizabeth Ruth Mongeon; daughters, Dayl Taylor of Craig, MT and Tracy Crow of Gig Harbor, WA; son, Kim Mongeon of Vancouver, WA; four grandchildren, Molly, Spencer, Jenny and Lucas.
Lee hated formal attire, so please, for the service, feel free to dress casually and make it BLUE, Lee’s favorite color. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to The Great Falls Voyagers Baseball Booster Club.