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Lee William Bird

Updated: Dec 27, 2023

Memorial Service & Burial Information:

Sunset Memorial Chapel & Gardens, 7601 Fleur Drive, Des Moines, IA 50321

Friday, December 29, 2023

Public Visitation, 10am

Funeral Service, 11am

Luncheon/Fellowship immediately following burial


Lee William Bird, age 92, of Grand Rivers, Kentucky, passed away with his daughters at his side on December 22 in Richmond, Kentucky.

Lee was a loving husband, father, son, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend. He was born in Missouri on February 8, 1931, and was adopted by Ralph Quincy and Helen (McConkey) Bird of Des Moines, IA. He grew up on the south side of Des Moines and attended Lincoln High School. He and his wife, Betty, later moved with their family to Effingham, IL and then to Dyersburg, TN before retiring in Kentucky near Kentucky Lake where they sailed for over 30 years. Lee was also a proud veteran having served in the Navy and Air Naval Reserve for 35+ years.

Lee was preceded in death by his wife, Betty, brother-in-law, Larry Hitsman and sister-in-law, Phyllis Grasty. He is loved and remembered by his daughters -- Janet Bird (Philip Weeks), Jeanne Bird (Mike Ryan), Jackie Bird Bauer (Mike), and Julie Bird (Jon Rose); grandchildren – Emilee McClain, Will Bauer, and Anna Bauer and great granddaughter, Hailee McClain.  He is also survived by his sister, Joy Baber, sisters-in-law, Dee (John) Thigpen and Nina Hitsman; brothers-in-law, Richard Grasty and Chuck Stanley and MANY nephews, nieces and friends.

Funeral Services will be held at 11:00 AM Friday, December 29, 2023, at Sunset Memorial Gardens, 7601 Fleur Drive, Des Moines, Iowa with a family burial to follow. Visitation will start at 10:00am prior to the funeral service at 11:00am.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the YMCA of Greater Des Moines ( or to the Wounded Warrior Project.

Sail on, Dad!

"A father is neither an anchor to hold us back, nor a sail to take us there, but a guiding light whose love shows us the way." 

The Combs, Parsons & Collins Funeral Home, Richmond in charge of local arrangements in Kentucky.



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