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Thursday, February 23, 1995 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Lee Irwin, '50S Owner Of Bothell Citizen

A memorial service for Lee Irwin, owner and editor of the weekly Bothell Citizen newspaper from 1951 to 1958, will be at 11 a.m. tomorrow at University Presbyterian Church.

Mr. Irwin, 75, a native of Seattle and recently a resident of Redmond, died Jan. 11 after a long illness.

Born May 1, 1919, Mr. Irwin grew up in Seattle, graduating from Garfield High School in 1936 and from the University of Washington in 1941. Ten years later, Mr. Irwin received a master's degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota.

After graduating from the UW, Mr. Irwin was a reporter for two years in Longview; after World War II, he was a reporter in Tacoma.

He left that job to buy the Bothell Citizen. Mr. Irwin also taught journalism as an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota and later in the same position at the UW.

In 1960, Mr. Irwin joined Walter Taylor to buy weekly newspapers in Gresham and Sandy, Ore. Later, the partners expanded their ownership to include weekly newspapers in the Oregon communities of Newport, Lincoln City, Tillamook, Seaside and Parkrose.

Mr. Irwin also worked as a correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor in the 1960s.

He won numerous state and national awards for editorial writing and was active in publishers associations in Washington and Oregon. One of his most cherished editorial campaigns resulted in the creation of Mount Hood Community College.

He was active in the Christian Science churches in Bothell and Graham, Pierce County, and held a number of civic positions in the Portland area, including president of the Gresham Chamber of Commerce, and served on the Portland Metropolitan Study Commission, the Portland-Multnomah County Consolidation Commission and the Oregon State Fair Commission.

Mr. Irwin's wife of 20 years, Marcia, died in 1962, leaving him to raise five children. In 1968, Mr. Irwin married Bonnie Clawson, who survives.

Other survivors include his sons, John of Wilsonville, Ore., and David of Seattle; daughters, Anne Johnson of Bellevue, Victoria of New York City and Jill of Seattle; and stepsons, Rodger Clawson of Gresham and Rob Clawson of Bend, Ore.

The family suggests remembrances in the form of contributions to the Lee Irwin Scholarship Fund at Mount Hood Community College or the Gresham and Troutdale, Ore., historical societies.

Copyright (c) 1995 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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