SJ392: Celebrating the life of John C. Lester, Jr.

Offered January 10, 2007
Prefiled January 10, 2007
Celebrating the life of John C. Lester, Jr.
Patrons-- Newman; Delegates: Byron and Putney

WHEREAS, John C. Lester, Jr., of Forest, a respected citizen and the owner of Lejack Dairy Farms, died on November 16, 2006; and

WHEREAS, a native of Washington County, John "Jack" Lester was born on April 23, 1922, to Lavenia Stovall and J. Carson Lester; and

WHEREAS, Jack Lester attended local schools, graduated from Liberty Hall High School in Glade Spring and earned a bachelor's degree in 1943 and a master's degree in 1949, both in animal science from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech); and

WHEREAS, Jack Lester served his country in World War II in General Patton's Third Army, 80th Division, as a first platoon commander; and he participated in the invasion of France and Germany at age 22; and

WHEREAS, after the war, Jack Lester married his one and only love, Leta Mae Anderson of Bluefield, in 1946, and the couple were married for 60 years; and

WHEREAS, Jack Lester and his new wife moved to the Town of Forest, where he worked as the manager of Ivy Hill Cattle Farm for 10 years; and

WHEREAS, Jack Lester bought a nearby farm and began Lejack Dairy Farms, which he owned and operated for 40 years, as well as founded Lejack Feed and Farm Supply; he was honored with the Virginia Distinguished Dairyman Award in 1991 for his lifetime achievements; and

WHEREAS, committed to excellence in the state's dairy industry, Jack Lester served on the State Board of Agriculture and Commerce for eight years, two years as president, and was a member of the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors; and

WHEREAS, Jack Lester was a member of the Ruritan Club, instrumental in the establishment of the Forest Medical Center and Forest Recreation Center, and served on the Bedford County Electoral Board; and

WHEREAS, Jack and Leta Mae Lester received the Outstanding Farm Family Award from the Bedford County Chamber of Commerce in 1971 and the Distinguished Service Award to Agriculture by Virginia Tech and the Dairy Club Industry Award in 1982; and

WHEREAS, Jack Lester turned over operations to his sons in 1987, but his love of the land and working with his family on their farms never diminished; and

WHEREAS, a principled man of strong faith, Jack Lester was a devoted member of Forest United Methodist Church and was active in the church's many missions in the community; and

WHEREAS, Jack Lester will be fondly remembered and greatly missed by his loving wife, his daughter and four sons, his thirteen grandchildren, his seven great-grandchildren, and numerous other family members and friends in Forest; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the Senate, the House of Delegates concurring, That the General Assembly mourn the passing of a community benefactor and outstanding Virginian, John C. Lester, Jr.; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the Senate prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to the family of John C. Lester, Jr., as an expression of the General Assembly’s respect for his memory.