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1962 Timothy "Tim" 2024

Timothy "Tim" Lloyd Lee

August 12, 1962 — March 11, 2024


Timothy Lloyd Lee (1962-2024) died on March 11, 2024 at ParkWest Hospital surrounded by loved ones after a year and half battle with pancreatic cancer.  Tim was born August 12, 1962 near Fort Walton Beach, FL before moving to East Tennessee (Corryton) with his father, Hubert Ophrey Lee (‘03) and mother, Hazel Inez Parker (‘76). He is survived by his wife of 34 years, Karen Lee; son, Dakota Lee (fiancé, Elizabeth Lamm); sister, Trudy Lee-Barber (wife, Jill Lee-Barber, daughter, Jordan Lee-Barber); and brother, Todd Lee (wife, Robyn Lee, son, Corey Lee). Tim was a member of Bethlehem United Methodist church and was currently attending Cedar Springs Presbyterian church. He graduated from Gibbs High School and East Tennessee State University with a degree in K-12 Special Education.  Tim was loved by many for his humor, kindness, and passion for teaching high school special education, a role in which he served 34 years before his retirement in 2021. His teaching career began in 1989 at Fulton High School and ended at Hardin Valley Academy. His philosophy of inclusion, integration, and advocacy work inside and outside of his classroom has inspired thousands of students (with and without physical and intellectual disabilities), their families, and communities writ large. While actively working with Special Olympics of Greater Knoxville throughout his life, he later became an Area Director for almost a decade.  The Lee family would like to extend a special word of gratitude to the following people: Opie and Gina Legg for their friendship and caregiving presence throughout his entire cancer diagnosis; Jennifer Hayes for her longtime loyalty to and constant support-raising for Tim; Carol Grubbs who acted as a second mother to Tim; Tristen Waite for his commitment to Tim’s educational vision and promoting his legacy at Hardin Valley; Tim’s oncology team at Tennessee Cancer led by Dr. Daniel Ibach; Dr. David Roife, Tim’s surgical oncologist; and the nursing staff at ParkWest Hospital.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Special Olympics of Greater Knoxville by Venmo @SpecialOlympicsTN (please indicate Tim Lee Memorial) or P.O. Box 18373 Knoxville, TN 37928. Donations also may be made to the classroom of Hardin Valley Academy in memory of Tim Lee by mail with attention to Tristen Waite 11345 Hardin Valley Road Knoxville, TN 37932.  A Celebration of Life service will be held 2:00 p.m. Saturday, April 13, 2024 at Cedar Springs Presbyterian Church (main sanctuary) 9132 Kingston Pike Knoxville, TN 37923 Rev. Todd Clapp officiating.  The family will receive friends at the church following the Celebration of Life service.   Condolences may be left at

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