Posted on Apr 02, 2014 - 02:09 PM

Grover Lee Owens Sr., 78, of Deltaville, Va., died at home on March 27, 2014. Grover Lee, a retired master carpenter/boat builder passed away after a long battle with cancer.

Grover Lee was the son of the late Dolson and Ethel Owens, originally from Mathews. He was preceded in death by his brother, Stanford T. Owens, and a sister, Joycelyn Brown. Grover Lee was also preceded in death by his wife, Mary S. Owens; three grandsons, Grover Lee Owens III, Kevin Lee Owens, and Brandon Lee Owens.

He is survived by two daughters, Theresa H. Gray, of Saluda, and Lynne Morgan; sons, Grover Lee Owens Jr., Bobby Owens, and stepdaughter, Betty Lou Hudgins, all of Mathews. Grover Lee is survived by five grandchildren; one step-grandson, four great-grandchildren, and one step-great-granddaughter. In addition to his family, Grover Lee leaves behind Selena Gray, mother of his children, and special friend, Doris H. Norton, and other extended family.

Grover Lee began building Chesapeake Bay deadrise boats in 1966 and continued his passion of boat building until 1997 when he completed his last 42’ workboat destined for crabbing. Over the years, Grover Lee built over 115 boats having no use for plans or formal drawings. In addition to boat building, Grover Lee loved horses and harness racing, building houses, and cabinets. One of his special furniture projects was a wooden conference table currently on display at the Pentagon.

Grover Lee retired from James River Reserve Fleet in 1999 after 14 years’ service. He was a member of Zoar Baptist Church and member of the Donovan Masonic Lodge #75 in Deltaville.

Grover Lee will be greatly missed by his family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Deltaville Maritime Museum, P.O. Box 466, or Zoar Baptist Church, P.O. Box 1010, Deltaville, Va. 23043.

A celebration of Grover Lee’s life will be held on Tuesday, April 8, 2014, at 11 a.m. at Zoar Church.