Henry Lee's Story - written at the time of the 55th Reunion


My great grandfather initially immigrated from China in the 1880s. Subsequently, my grandfather, father and mother immigrated. Two older sisters and my younger brother and I were born in the USA.Three older sisters were born in China. My parents owned and ran a laundry in the small community of Zanesville, Ohio. They instilled in us the virtues and values of family, education, honesty, humility and hard work. Only five of us children grew up together in the USA. We were fully accepted by the community and we all excelled. I was elected president of my high school class. One of my sisters was elected homecoming queen. My high school class of 350 was exceptional and close-knit, similar to our West Point class. We also have class reunions every five years.

I was one of the very  few classmates of Asian descent. West Point was enlightening, enriching, unique and enjoyable. Similar to my high school years, I was fully accepted and integrated.All my company (M-1) mates were of the same height! I liked that. We were the last class to have company assignments by size. I enjoyed athletic activities. I was selected company M-1 athlete-of-the-year twice and was the Brigade Boxing Champion at 132 lbs in my yearling year. The Saturday after graduation I had a military wedding at the Cadet Chapel to Lucy Poy. Saber bearers were fellow M-1 classmates Seaward, Valente, Hastings and Trauner. We were blessed with two children,Cynthia and Douglas.

Most of my military assignments were in the Far East - Hawaii, Vietnam (2), Okinawa and Korea. Three were unaccompanied tours. I earned two Masters of Civil Engineering (Structures and Construction) at the University of Michigan and received my Professional Engineer License from the Commonwealth of Virginia.


I enjoyed my two assignments with the Corps of Engineer Districts working on Civil Works and Military Construction. I also enjoyed working in a Korean/USA Joint Command as the Deputy Engineer for I Corps Group.

My last military assignment was as the Deputy District Engineer in the Corps of Engineer District, Sacramento. Lucy and I enjoyed the area and we remained upon retirement. Subsequently, we both became very strong Mental Health advocates. I was appointed and served over 10 years on the Sacramento County Mental Health Board, as well as performing consulting work for the California State Mental Health Division. We participate in many leisure activities. One of our most enjoyable activities is ballroom dancing where we develop many new friendships while maintaining physical fitness.

West Point and growing up in my home town of Zanesville, Ohio, have been major infuences on my life. I am relatively healthy and look forward to many more future reunions. Grip hands!!!