Obituary by Major Alan Aggett
from the Salvation Army
Derek Norman Lee
was born in
, May 1918
His Father Edwin was a successful Gold Medal Piano Maker until the 1914
–18 War all but destroyed his business.
’s upbringing different from most children … he
never had traditional toys but was encouraged to grow vegetables and look
after animals, and to carry out scientific experiments.
was greatly influenced by Mr Tucker a piano tuner who
worked with his father and whom he always referred to as his tutor.
Mr Tucker had been blinded in a boiler room explosion on a steam
boat in the
but despite this was able to work as a piano tuner and
to pass on stories of his exploits and his wealth of knowledge.
describes how on Sundays after lunch they experimented
with a couple of old gramophone records with leather pads attached, and
fixed on an axle to generate electricity.
has always had a fascination for the source and uses
of electricity. Because
of his eccentric upbringing
developed an enquiring mind but like many of his
generation was not able to go on to higher education.
He tried to understand the workings of the human body and often
argued with his Doctor and disagreed with much scientific research.
Leaving school at
went to work at Acme in
, and there he stayed for fifty years.
He met his wife Iris in a
and they were married for 46 years until her death
three years ago. Although
they had planned on a large family, sadly
they were unable to have any children.
Iris was a very talented Dressmaker passing on her skills to many
others, including Audrey with whom she maintained a 50 year friendship
culminating in them both retiring from Enfield to Clacton.
Audrey regularly visited and helped
during the difficult years of widowhood and sadly is
unable to be here today because her own husband Ken suddenly died within
has just one surviving relative, a cousin in
, Dr Donald King with whom he corresponded regularly
and who is currently in
en route to visit
As well as
’s interests in science he was a keen gardener,
enjoyed model making and other crafts. He also showed great interest in
the progress of a number of young people known to him. A generous man
Norman supported a number of Charities including Horse Rescue, Seeing Dogs
for the Blind, and the Hospice.
He maintained his
early interest in the Paranormal, and
firmly believed that there is some form of communication between the
Spirits and us. He
experimented with Electronic Voice Phenomena which involved leaving tape
recorders on throughout the night to pick up supernatural sounds and was
convinced that he succeeded. Always
active and with his enquiring and open mind, for
nothing was impossible and everything merited his time
In the last few
months as he declined physically
was aware that death was just around the corner but
this did not trouble him. Less than 48 hours before his death he was
asking for a notepad and pen to record his time in the hospital
was fiercely independent; his home was called “
means I do it my way, the
he very much
appreciated all the help he received from his friends and neighbours, Home
Help Service and the Nursing staff.
Perhaps one of the
’s life was in 1970, when on holiday in
with his wife he saw Nessie the Loch Ness Monster.
He recorded that moment in great detail, took photos and shared his
sighting with local researchers.
… the loch was calm and on
my left I could see a row of dark round patches which I thought were blow
holes caused by the warm water coming up from under the loch..
My eyes wandered to the centre of the loch.
I spotted a large V shaped wash that seemed to be touching
both banks. Looking at
the point of the V I saw an object the size of a small boat.
I put my hand in my pocket and took out my small Rom Royal view
glasses. I had never
seen anything like it; an ape like head, grey and furry and then it dived
out of sight. I looked
again and this time saw what I thought was an oak coloured log, that
seemed to be at least sixty feet long.
I ran to the car and got my camera, and out of the corner of my eye
I saw the object rise out of the water.
It cast a shadow which looked very large and terrifying.
The neck was slender and round,
and as long as the body.
The back was firm and slightly arched divided into about twenty
arcs the centre one being larger than the rest.
I had a job to pull out
the front of my camera in my excitement,
and when I had done so I put the camera over my head, to miss the
trees took a chance and
pulled the shutter lever hoping for the best.
I was trembling all over, knowing I had seen something but what???
continued to read all he could about Loch Ness and
visited again to meet and exchange notes with Tim Dinsdale who was so
convinced that Nessie existed that he had given up his job and spent
twenty years trying to prove her existence.
widened his interest to include
the geological features and the possibilities of there being a
system of underground caverns in that part of
which could be the home of mysterious creatures of the
deep, perhaps left over from a previous era.
Legend has it that
in 565 AD St Colomba rescued a man who was being attacked by a monster in
Loch Ness. Over the centuries
there have been periodic sightings but none seriously recorded until the
20th Century. Photos
have been taken, some possibly hoaxes, Sonar Sweeps of the
have been made and mini submarines have been used to
try and find Nessie. There
is still no proof that Nessie exists, but on the other hand the
is big enough and deep enough to hide such a creature.
It is impossible for just one creature to have survived for
centuries sand so there must be a breeding population
… and so the myth lives on.
Thirty years later
decided to hand over his notes, photos, drawings and
models so that they could be preserved after his death.
Lois Wickstrom from
a Loch Ness Researcher was contacted and thrilled to
receive all this information which as she said was written so convincingly
that she felt she was sharing the experience.
Lois put all the information including photos and original drawings
into a Web Book crediting
as the author. This book has been downloaded by at
least 500 people around the world, which means that neither the name of
Norman Lee nor this work which meant so much to
will ever be erased
Norman and his cousin Donald were involved in tracing their family
was sure that one of his ancestors, Thomas Gambier,
possibly an African Witch Doctor sailed into
in 1638. He tried to get further information from the
records office but the records only date back to 1700.
He even asked friends to search the web but he was unable to prove his
theory. But it was his theory,
he believed it and hence his interest in