Dr Han Choo Lee was born in Korea in 1924. He graduated from Yonsei University College of Medicine in 1948. Han arrived in Canada with the aid of the United Church in 1952. He practised in residence in Alberta, becoming a member of the Medical Council of Canada in 1957, and of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia in 1961. He arrived in Williams Lake in the early 1960s and practised medicine here for close to 30 years, both as a general surgeon and family practitioner.
He epitomized the old-style surgeon, being gifted in his ability to successfully deal with a wide range of surgical challenges that presented themselves in a frontier town. Han was particularly popular with the First Nations people, who benefited greatly from his abilities and skill. He was a shy, retiring person with a great sense of humor. During this time, Han and his wife, Beverly, enjoyed traveling abroad and summer visits to their cottage at Felker Lake.
Han’s sideline was studying the money markets and real estate, which turned into a second career when in 1991 the family retired to Vancouver.
Han’s health declined over the past few years and he was well looked after by his family, eventually passing away from a debilitating stroke on 7 October 2004. He had been predeceased earlier in the year by his brother, Hahn-Been Lee, former deputy prime minister of Korea.
He is survived by his wife, Beverly; son, Steven; and daughter, Catherine.
—N.J. Donnelly, MD
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