Tonight the City of San Mateo is mourning the passing of former Mayor and City Councilman John Lee, after a courageous battle with cancer.
John served 13 years on the San Mateo City Council, from 1998 through 2011, when he retired due to term limits. John served as mayor to the City of San Mateo three times, most recently in 2010.
John served in the United States Marine Corp and was a Korean War veteran. John was a a small business owner, and a long-standing member of the San Mateo Rotary Club.
During his time on the San Mateo City Council, John helped usher in major improvements that have enhanced the quality of life for all San Mateo residents, including the building of the Century 12 Downtown San Mateo movie theatres, the state-of-the-art San Mateo Public Library and the San Mateo Police Department. John also supported the development of the Bay Meadows housing and commercial project, as well as transit-oriented development projects along the Caltrain corridor.
During his time on the City Council, John helped the City of San Mateo prepare for the 21st Century and beyond through the development of a transit-oriented master plan, a sustainability plan, and plans for the growth of bicycle and pedestrian friendly communities.
As a military veteran, John was especially proud of the 40-year relationship between the City of San Mateo and their adopted sons, the 101st Airborne Division, Company A.
John was not shy to express his opinions, and often took tough, principled stands on issues. However, John never lost his sense of respect for diverse points of view, encouraging people to "disagree without being disagreeable."
John's leadership will be missed in San Mateo, but his memory and legacy will live on as long as the City of San Mateo thrives.
Information on services will be forthcoming.
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