LeRoy E. Witcher

April 01, 1928 - September 17, 2022


Obituary For LeRoy E. Witcher

LeRoy Witcher, better known as “Papa Lee” was an amazing loving presence to friends and family alike. His life journey ended on September 17, 2022, at age 94. He was born on April 1, 1928, at home on a farm in Chester County, Pennsylvania, to James and Mary Ellen Drumgold Witcher.

Lee was a lifelong enthusiast of athletics, and competed in track events during his high school years. Near the end of World War II, Lee joined the Navy at age sixteenth, with his mother’s permission. He served in the Pacific until the war ended in 1945. Engineering had been a passion for Lee, and after the war ended, he began his college education at NYU.

When the Korean conflict began in 1951, Lee was given orders to return to active duty. He spent several cold months in Korea participating in rescue efforts. He finished his time in the Navy as a member of the Submarine Service. Lee always expressed how grateful he was for the GI Bill, which allowed him to complete his Engineering education at Drexel University.

Lee was a lifelong learner, teacher, and mentor to his colleagues, and extended family. He made many contributions in his field of Power Engineering, while doing research and design at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. He came to Raleigh in the seventies and went to work for CP&L as an expert in the design and maintenance of power plants, including nuclear plants. He retired from CP&L in 1995, and then ran his own consulting business. Lee was a Registered Professional Engineer, a fellow in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, an Electrical Engineer, and a member Sigma Xi.

Lee was a wonderful man. His family, which included his beloved wife, Audrey, his sister, Lenora Wright, and daughters, sons, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and assorted dogs and cats, all adored him. Humor and unconditional love were basic qualities in all his relationships. Family members knew that if you were stranded in a storm five hours away, you could call Lee, and his response would be, “I’m on my way!” Lee’s patience, wisdom, and optimism live on in everyone who loved him.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, October 22, 2022, at 2:00 PM in Soapstone United Methodist Church in Raleigh, NC. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the SPCA of Wake County, or the Food Bank of Central and Easter North Carolina.


22 Oct

Memorial Service

02:00 AM

Soapstone United Methodist Church 12837 Norwood Rd Ra, NC 12837 Get Directions »
by Obituary Assistant

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  • 10/16/2022

    Speaking for the USSVI Tarheel Base Submarine Veterans, we offer out condolences and prayers to the family and friends of this Submarine Brother. He proudly served this great country and should be respected. We wish fair winds and following seas to our brother as he goes on Eternal Patrol, to be with God, the Father Almighty. Chaplain Gene Rutter USSVI Tarheel Base

  • 10/05/2022

    LeRoy was an amazing, talented person and he will be missed at family reunions! May God comfort & heal the family during their sorrow. Love & prayers to you. Valerie Harrison-Walker, Descendant of Aulsie

  • 10/05/2022

    Cousin Leroy was an amazing soul. He would call and check in often. It was a treat to talk with him and share stories. You will be missed.

  • 10/04/2022

    May God bring peace and comfort to Audrey and all close family members as you hold onto the lovely memories of this gentle giant. With love, Doris Valentine (cousin) Daughter of Eleanor Drumgold Valentine

  • 10/04/2022

    You will be missed as the family historian.Sending prayers and condolences.Rest in peace.Melray Scherer granddaughter of Luther Harrison.Baltimore MD

  • 10/04/2022

    Condolences to the family, may God keep you in His loving care during this time. I'm grateful for our better place God made for us where we'll see our loved one again. With love & prayers, Sheila Wright (daughter of Christine Valentine aka Macklin or Hatcher)

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