Dr. William “Lee” Hand was an accomplished man. He was a husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, veteran, professor, and healer. He loved his family and friends, his church, teaching medicine, trips to the beach and a glass of good Scotch.
Born January 23, 1937 in Cartersville, Georgia, Lee was the son of the late Mary Holt and Reverend Jack G. Hand.
His early years were spent in the Georgia cities of Cartersville, Atlanta and Albany and he graduated from high school in Jacksonville, Florida. Lee Hand knew from a young age that he wanted to practice medicine. He earned his B.S. from Davidson College and his M.D. from Emory University.
During his residency at Emory he specialized in and served as chief resident for Internal Medicine. His medical training was completed with a fellowship in Infectious Diseases at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. He also served in the United States Air Force.
A gifted physician, Lee’s love for medicine was superseded only by his passion for teaching and medical research. During his career he authored over 100 articles in various medical journals and served on many councils and advisory boards.
Dr. Hand went on to become the Chief of Infectious Diseases at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia and then later became the Chairman of Internal Medicine and then Associate Dean for Research at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in El Paso.
He was recognized as a Who’s Who in the South and Southwest and was listed as one of the Best Doctors in America as well one of the Best Doctors in El Paso.
Lee’s Sharp wit and keen mind were apparent to all who knew him. These traits, combined with his kind heart and strong faith, were flavored with a deep Southern accent that left a lasting impression. He enjoyed attending symphony performances, swimming, and watching the Atlanta Braves.
Lee’s journey on Earth ended on September 27th when he passed peacefully in his sleep to be with our Lord. He was blessed with a full life and will be dearly missed by all.
Lee is survived by his beloved wife, Debbie; his children Julia Johnson (Chris), Bill Hand, Ryan Harper (Kara), and Whitney Harper; brother Jack Hand (Grace) and nephews Chris (Heather) and Michael (Sarah) Hand. He was a proud and loving grandfather to six: Boaz, Ava Jean, Nolan, Annabelle, Emma, and Everly Harper.<
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Western Hills Methodist Church Foundation or El Paso Symphony Orchestra.
Celebration of Life will be held Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 11 a.m. at Western Hills United Methodist Church, 524 Thunderbird Dr., El Paso, TX 79912. www.martinfuneralhomewest.com
Published in El Paso Times from Sept. 30 to Oct. 9, 2017