Cover photo for Lee Hartman's Obituary
1935 Lee 2023

Lee Hartman

February 26, 1935 — August 4, 2023

The Upper Clearwater Valley lost one of its quiet, yet strong, benefactors with the

passing of Lee Anthony Hartman on Aug. 4, 2023, at his home near Kamiah, Idaho.

Born Feb. 26, 1935, in Milwaukee, Wisc., to Fred and Viola Hartman, Lee always felt an

attachment to the state of his birth, but he did not remain a Midwesterner past his

teenage years. His mother’s decision to move with her sons to El Cajon, Calif., in 1952

set the stage for the next several years of his life.

Not long after graduating high school and attending college for a short time, he joined

the U.S. Air Force in 1954, beginning his 20-year military career. His training as a

nuclear arms technician took him to England, Germany, Japan and Taiwan, as well as

Colorado, New Mexico, Wisconsin, Florida and Hawaii before returning to California. He

became a nuclear weapons maintenance superintendent along the way. Though he

received many in-service commendations, he did not want accolades for his service. He

simply saw it as a job to support his family and protect his country. He retired in 1975 as

Senior Master Sergeant.

While in England he married Verina Ferraby in 1956. The couple had five surviving

children and later divorced.

After his military career, he returned to college to complete his degree. It was there he

discovered his passion for accounting and worked as a senior accountant and financial

analyst for the City of Riverside, Calif., for 11 years before retiring in 1990.

In 1993 he moved to Stites, Idaho, purchasing the lot his mother and stepdad, Ted

Marshall, bought in their retirement. While there, he became a valued resource and

support for the Stites and Kooskia city clerks. He also was treasurer of the Kooskia

Lions Club, a reliable helper at the Kooskia Mealsite and volunteered as a member of

Senior Retired Volunteer Program (RSVP).

In 2000, he married Rayora (Raora) Davidson, and moved to Kamiah. Not one to

remain idle, he sought his place in this community and soon became involved with the

Pine Ridge Water & Sewer Dist. Board. He served as treasurer and was instrumental in

bringing things into alignment with Idaho State Codes, as well as overseeing the

replacement of the entire water line system. He also assisted the Valley View Water


In 2006, he enlisted the help of his wife and a few willing neighbors to undertake the

reclamation project of turning the former site of the lagoons on Pine Ridge into a

community park, giving neighborhood children a place to play. He and Rayora faithfully

supported and tended to this project for 15 years before turning it over to the community

for broader support and care.

Lee’s love of fishing grew from his childhood in Wisconsin and continued throughout life

as a primary passion and way to relax. He fished the lakes of Wisconsin, the canals in

Arizona, the ocean off California, and the creeks, lakes, reservoirs and ponds of

north-central Idaho.

His secondary passion, dancing, began when his mother gave him dance lessons as a

high school graduation gift. He found a home for this delight in the square dance

communities of the U.S. and Europe when he lived there. He was a member of the

Mountain Dewers Square Dance Club in Kooskia, Idaho, and regularly traveled to other

regional clubs to dance until health issues forced him to give it up in 2009. He also

bowled league in Kamiah for several years.

Lee was a problem solver, whether unscrambling financial accounts or determining the

best way to fix a car, washing machine or computer. Indeed, he was on the ground floor

of the computer age, using them in his work from the 1980s and even building several

from scratch after retirement.

His problem-solving expanded to health issues when he was diagnosed with

esophageal cancer in 2001 and two different kinds of bladder cancer and COPD in later

years. Through years of research and real-life experience, he turned potential tragedy

into support tools, using his knowledge to assist others through online support networks

for both esophageal cancer and COPD. He was given 1-5 years to live in 2001, so was

one of the longest-living survivors of esophageal cancer and looked at the past 22 years

as a gift.

He is survived by his wife at their home on Pine Ridge; sons: Paul Hartman, Cedarpines

Park, Calif., Kevin (Lori) Hartman, near Kingman, Ariz., Jim (Colleen) Hartman,

Lakeside, Calif., and John (Gina) Hartman, Boise, Idaho; daughter, Lea Ann Hartman,

Dallas, Texas; stepson: Ron (Christina) Davidson, Post Falls, Idaho; seven

grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; brothers: Jack (Linda) Hartman, Waupaca,

Wisc., and George (Sandy) Hartman, McMinnville, Ore.; stepsister: Dyana Anderson,

Santee, Calif., and aunt, Eva Bytof, Cardiff by the Sea, Calif. He was preceded in death

by his father, mother, stepfather; infant son Lee Anthony Hartman; and many of his

extended family.

Lee requested no services, but a family celebration of life will be held later in California.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Lee Hartman, please visit our flower store.


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