Bok Lee, MD

Obituary of Bok Y. Lee, MD

Bok Y. Lee, MD, FACS passed away peacefully at home on March 11, 2024, surrounded by his loving family.  Bok was born on October 16, 1928 in Seoul, South Korea, the son of Sang Don Lee and Moosoon Hahn.  Bok was married to Taihee Lee, the love of his life, who predeceased him. They shared a lifelong partnership, friendship and sixty-one years of marriage.


Bok is a graduate of Seoul National University College of Medicine.  He came to the United States, after serving as a volunteer civilian interpreter for the First Marine Division, during the Korean War.  He completed his internship at William McKinley Memorial Hospital in New Jersey and residency at St. Claire’s Hospital and Health Center in New York City, where he trained under John L. Madden, MD, FACS, his mentor and “surgical father” who instilled in Bok the highest ideals in the art, science and practice of surgery.


Bok began his distinguished career at the Veterans Administration Medical Center, Castle Point, where he held the positions of Staff Surgeon, Chief of Surgical Service and Director of Surgical Research, supported by Teresa Schaffner, who was indispensable to his work and many accomplishments.  As director of the surgical residency program, Bok established the first surgical residency program affiliated with St. Clare’s Hospital and Health Center.  His academic and hospital appointments included: Professor of Surgery, New York Medical College; Director of Surgical Research at Sound Shore Medical Center; Attending Physician in the Department of Surgery Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery at Westchester Medical Center; and adjunct professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York. 


Over the course of nearly fifty years, Bok authored and co-authored nine books, along with 246 publications. He had more than twenty-five professional society memberships, fellowships and honors including “The Society for Vascular Surgery Distinguished Fellow” and “The New York Chapter of the American College of Surgeons Lifetime Membership Award”.  He served as a member of the American College of Surgeons Board of Governors (1993-1999) and was a member of the Upstate New York Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, where he served in several leading roles.  As the John L. Madden, MD Lecture Chairman, Bok established the “John L. Madden, MD, FACS Lecture Series and Surgical Symposium” in 1978, which continued for more than thirty years. 


After his retirement, Bok served as Chairman of Clinical Research and Development at the Life Support Technologies group, Tarrytown, New York.  There, he had the great privilege of working with Glenn Butler, Mickey Dyevich, Jorge Beale, Jacques Vieweg and Patrick McCabe.


Bok is survived by three daughters: Portia Lee and husband Dean Fuleihan of Loudonville, New York; Ann Cali and husband Joseph Cali of Stamford, Connecticut; and Angela Lee Furlong and husband Robert L. Furlong of Poughkeepsie, New York, as well as five granddaughters: Deya and Kyra Fuleihan; Alexandra and Emma Cali; and Tai Marie Furlong.


The Lee Family is deeply grateful to Beatrice Ortsin for her kindness, compassion and excellent care.  They are also very thankful to all of Bok’s lifelong physicians and to the staff of Hudson Valley Hospice.


Visitation will be held on Saturday, March 16, 2024 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm at Straub, Catalano and Halvey Funeral Home, 55 East Main Street, Wappingers Falls, New York.  The memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm at the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery in the Community Chapel Mausoleum, 342 South Avenue, Poughkeepsie, New York.  In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Hudson Valley Hospice Foundation 80 Washington Street, Suite 204, Poughkeepsie, New York 12601.


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12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Saturday, March 16, 2024
Straub, Catalano & Halvey Funeral Home
55 East Main Street
Wappingers Falls, New York, United States
(845) 297-2610

Funeral Service

2:00 pm
Saturday, March 16, 2024
Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery
342 South Avenue
Poughkeepsie, New York, United States
(845) 454-6020
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