Lee Percy Gaalaas

Army Badge
  • Name: Lee Percy Gaalaas
  • Location of Birth: Stillwater, Minnesota
  • Date of Birth: March 20, 1919
  • Date of Death: November 7, 2009 (90 years old)
  • Parents: Percy and Grace Lee Gaalaas
  • High School and Class: 1937 - Grand Rapids High School, Grand Rapids, Minnesota
  • College: 1940 - Itasca Junior College, Coleraine, Minnesota
    1947 - University of Chicago
  • Highest Rank:
  • Branch: Army
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  • Military Highlights:
    Lee served in the Philippines during World War II.

  • Wars Involved:
    World War II

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  • Civilian Life:
    The Gaalaas family moved to Grand Rapids, Minnesota in 1932.

    After Army Officer Training School, he returned to Grand Rapids in 1942 and married his high school sweetheart, Priscilla Rossman. They lived in Portland, Oregon and Santa Rosa, California before he served in the Philippines.

    Following World War II, Lee returned to the University of Chicago and graduated in 1947. He was employed in sales and accounting at the Herald Review (Northprint) until retiring in 1984.

    For more than 50 years he worked with the Boy Scouts and was awarded the Silver Beaver for his efforts. He was a member of Cap Baker Lions Club for over 50 years and participated in several Masonic Lodge activities for many years. Lee was a charter member of Nordstjernen Sons of Norway Lodge and served as a zone manager for four years.

    After his retirement, Lee was an instructor in the 55 Alive driving program and the advanced hunter education program. He always found time for hunting and fishing with family and friends and enjoyed boating. He was an avid booster for the high school ski program. Lee was an active member of Community Presbyterian Church and had served as Sunday School teacher, elder, and deacon.

    Lee was preceded in death by his parents and five siblings; Betty, June, Perry, Grace, and Carol.

    Surviving family includes his wife of 67 years, Priscilla; four children, Jean (Richard) Morse, Larry (Susan), Donald (LouAnne), and Peder (Maren); thirteen grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; two sisters, Barbara (Neil) Doyle and Peggy (Bruce) Johnson; and many nieces and nephews.

    Lee died at Evergreen Terrace in Grand Rapids and is buried in Itasca Calvary Cemetery at Grand Rapids, Minnesota. (Plot I-D-09-35)

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