Lee Duncan, 1954-2019

Lee Duncan, a 30-year member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 48, passed away May 23 after a long battle with cancer. He was 65.

Lee Duncan

Duncan was a business rep for Local 48. He was also co-founder of the non-profit Unions for Kids (U4K) motorcycle poker run. The annual event, held from 2003 to 2015, included a poker run, Harley-Davidson raffle, auction, and chili cookoff — with all proceeds going to Doernbecher Children’s Hospital. U4K gave away 12 Harleys and cut checks to the children’s hospital totaling $465,000.

Oliver Lee Duncan was born May 12, 1954, in Fort Madison, Iowa. His family moved to Evergreen, Colorado, and later to Baker, Oregon, where he graduated from high school.

A veteran of the U.S. Navy, Duncan joined the Marine Unit of IBEW  Local 48 in 1989 after taking a job at WSI at the Portland Ship Repair Yard on Swan Island. He left the shipyard in 1994 to work as a low-voltage electrician on land. In 1999, while working for Christensen Electric, then-Local 48 business manager Jerry Bruce hired him as an organizer.

Duncan remained on staff as an organizer and later as a business rep until 2009. He went back to the tools for a couple years before being rehired as a business rep in 2011. He worked in that capacity until his retirement in July 2014.

Duncan served on Local 48’s Executive Board, as a delegate to the Northwest Oregon Labor Council, and on the Executive Board of the IBEW & United Workers Federal Credit Union.

Duncan is survived by his wife Kathy, also a member of Local 48. They married in 2008 in a ceremony held at the IBEW Local 48 hall. Other survivors include step-daughter, Amy; sister, Debra Payne; and brother, John.

A memorial service has been set for 3 p.m. Sunday, June 30, at the IBEW Local 48 Hall.

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