Russ was born on July 3, 1948, in Durango, Colo., to Wallace Raymond Lee and Ione Slade Lee.
He spent his childhood and teen years in Redmesa, Colo., except for one year, which was spent in Babbitt, Nev.
Russ served in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper from 1966 to 1969. He served for one year in Vietnam. Russ’ service to his country took a great toll on his health, both physically and mentally, but he felt it his duty to follow in his father’s footsteps and serve his country. He was awarded the Silver Star for his actions in battle.
Russ loved to golf and spent many hours on various golf courses with family and friends. He also loved camping and hiking in the beautiful outdoors.
Russ enjoyed biking. In 1990, Russ was determined to earn his spot as a “true biker” and decided to take his 21 speed from Pagosa Springs, Colo., to San Diego, Calif. He battled rain and wind and made the trip in seven days. He was picked up at the end of his ordeal, totally exhausted.
If ever there was a deed needing to be done or a spirit lifted, Russ was the first to be there. He loved helping others. Russ was a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served in many church callings throughout his life. He was proud to be an American and was involved in many civic events.
Russ will be laid to rest in Redmesa, Colo., near his parents.
Memorial services will be held at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Pagosa Springs on Friday, Dec. 6, at 10 a.m.