Lee Wentworth Flieger died at the DECH in Fredericton on September 25. He was predeceased by his mother, Kaye (Neill) and his father, Norman Flieger. He is survived by his brother Herbert Flieger (Lloydminster) and sister, Anne Flieger (Salt Spring Island), several nephews and many cousins including Joan Russell of Miramichi with whom he had a close relationship.
Lee was born on December 11, 1947 in Chatham and grew up there. He remained proud of his Chatham roots and stayed in touch with friends from the area. Lee attended Teacher’s College in Fredericton and completed his BA at UNB. He taught a year at Harkins Academy in Newcastle before returning to Fredericton where he worked for several years with the New Brunswick Power Commission, then transferred to the provincial Department of Social Services where he spent the rest of his career.
Lee resided on George St. for more than 40 years and was affectionately known as the Mayor of George St. From his balcony he surveyed his neighbourhood and was hailed by friends who walked or drove past. He made friends easily with neighbours, fellow tenants, vendors at the market, health care workers, and everyone he met. Of special note are the university students he got to know through his neighbour, Oliver Gorman-Asal, and hosted at hearty dinners of roast beef or turkey or ham and all the trimmings, or gathered to watch sporting events – always with a beer or glass of red. Lee stayed in touch with these special friends and many others. He got to know their parents, their children and grand children, and worried about difficulties they faced and took pride in their accomplishments. They were his extended family.
Lee loved food, particularly childhood desserts from his mother’s recipes – blueberry cake, date squares, chocolate chip cookies, lemon snow, cherry pound cake – treats he happily shared when a dinner guest or on birthdays and other occasions. His dark and light fruitcakes were well fortified with quality liqueurs and were a highly prized gift. He loved to have the first produce of the season, rising early to be at the market for the first strawberries, beet greens, and yellow beans.
Lee had a great interest in Irish writers, Newfoundland writers, and he also enjoyed books on local history topics. He was a big fan of curling, baseball (the Blue Jays) and American football. He loved his annual fall vacations on Grand Manan. He was knowledgeable about classic cars. He loved organ music and enjoyed playing the organ in his apartment. He made a study of the instrument and knew the organs in local churches and around the world. Lee sang in the choir at St. Paul’s United Church and also in the choir of STU’s chapel. He had friends in the Arts community and supported their work. Lee was an avid reader and had a particular interest in Irish writers and Newfoundland writers, and he enjoyed books on local history topics. He was a big fan of curling, baseball (the Blue Jays) and American football.
Even as his health deteriorated and he did some complaining, he remained positive and was quite content watching his sports, “talking” to his friends on his tablet, communing with his felines – first Miss Mew and later Kitty – and playing the occasional game of cards.
Lee was unique, a big character – sharp witted and sometimes a curmudgeon. He loved to tease and provoke and loved to say he “got” someone. He was equally thoughtful and generous and interested in events in the lives of others who will cherish memories of get-togethers with Lee and more personal visits and conversations. His friends are numerous and some he would like mentioned will be inadvertently left out, but Lee will be missed especially by neighbours, the Shorts, Beyeas, Gorman-Asals, Peaches, and Masons, and by young(er) friends, Jason, Duncan and Gill, John A, Bruno, Mike, Mitchell, John T and Dominique.
Lee appreciated the care of medical staff at the DECH while he was a patient there. His funeral will be held at St. Paul’s United Church at 2 p.m. on Friday, September 30, 2022 followed by a reception in the church hall. Those wishing to make gifts in Lee’s memory may wish to consider the Fredericton Homeless Shelters, the SPCA, or a charity of the donor’s choice. To leave a note of condolence, please visit www.mcadamsfh.com.