The 2013 inductee into the St. Mary’s Athletic Hall of Fame is Lester Hughes Lee, Sr. of the class of 1961. The induction ceremony will occur in the St. Mary’s School gymnasium on Oct. 23 after the 9 a.m. all school mass.
Lee was born in Natchitoches on Oct. 11, 1943 and is married to Marietta Baker Lee, who is also a 1961 graduate of St. Mary’s. The Lees have five children: Tracy Lee Daily, Lester Hughes Lee, Jr., Jennifer Lee Coburn, Michael Joseph Lee and Stephen Ashley Lee.
Lee graduated from St. Mary’s High School in 1961 and left quite the legacy while at the school.
He was a four-year letterman and an All-District selection at St. Mary’s in basketball from 1958-1961. He was also named to the All-Parish basketball team in 1960-1961 and was the only underclassman on the 1960 Class C All-State basketball team.
He scored 62 points in a St. Mary’s basketball game and was the starting guard on the 1960 St. Mary’s Class C State Basketball Runner-Up team.
He also lettered in each of his four years in high school on the baseball team.
Lee would then go to Northwestern State University and became a two-year letterman and a starting guard for the Demons basketball team in 1964-65 and 1965-66. He was voted Best Defensive Player in each of those two years and was named captain of the 1965-66 NSU Basketball team. In 2011, he was named to the NSU “All-Century Basketball Team.”
He graduated from NSU in 1966 with a degree in health and physical education and a minor in social studies. He later obtained a master’s degree plus 30 at NSU in Supervision and Administration.
After his days at NSU, he went back into the high school ranks as a coach at St. Mary’s High School, Natchitoches Central High School, Marthaville High School, Robeline High School and Fairview Alpha High School.
He also would be the principal at St. Mary’s from 1990-1995 and also serving as principal at Natchitoches Central and Cloutierville. He was also a finalist for the Louisiana Principal of the Year award for 1988-1989. After retiring as a principal, Mr. Lee served as the Human Resource Manager at Valley Electric Membership Corporation for fourteen years.
Lee currently serves on the Pastoral Council at Immaculate Conception Church and was the Parish Director of Religious Education for fourteen years. He is a Knight of Columbus, a Board Member for the Natchitoches Chamber of Commerce and a founding Board Member of Dixie Youth Baseball.
The St. Mary’s administration established the St. Mary’s Athletic Hall of Fame during the 1990s.
The purpose of the Athletic Hall of Fame is to inspire current St. Mary’s students to achieve not only in athletics, but also in academics and the community. The hope is that by displaying the athletic achievements of former students, that this will instill in its present students the desire to achieve in all aspects of their lives.