133 Mason St., Onalaska, WI • Call (608) 788-2188


Leora “Lee” Anderson

July 13, 2022 | 6 comments

Leora “Lee” West Purcell Anderson joined her heavenly father at her daughter’s home in Onalaska on July 11th, 2022.

Lee was born in 1940 in Kemblesville, PA the only child of James S. Purcell and Jean Irene West Purcell. She was delivered at home by her Grandfather; Dr. Frederick West. Lee’s young years were turbulent from WWII and her parents divorcing shortly after. At the age of eleven, she went on to live with her father and stepmother Lillian Purcell in Oxford, PA.

In 1958, she graduated First Year National Honor Society from Oxford Area High School. Lee married Joel H. Anderson, also of the Oxford area. Joel then joined the Air Force and they slowly moved West, finally landing in La Crosse WI in 1970. They proceeded to raise their four children here in WI; Joel H. Jr (Cheryl); Mark F. (Carole); Steven P., and Kelly B. (Todd Lukwitz). Lee is survived by six grandchildren, Steven J. Anderson, Joshua J. Anderson, Jeremy J. Anderson, Shannon E. Anderson, Pari R. Lukwitz, and Mikayla E. Lukwitz. She also has six surviving great-grandchildren, four half brothers, step mother Lillian, brother and sister in law Clarence & Sue Anderson, sister in law Joanne Anderson, and several nieces and nephews in WI, MN, and TN.

Lee was preceded in death by her parents, James Summerfield Purcell, Jean West Dill, and two grandsons, Jamie RM Anderson, and Shawn MJ Anderson.

Lee and Joel owned and operated Anderson Agency Inc. until bought out by daughter Kelly in 2004. In their retirement, they bought a motorhome and traveled the country for 9 years. They ended up in Bear Creek Community in Ormond Beach, FL. Lee and Joel were avid tennis players in the community and Lee was very active in numerous community events, including singing and dancing in many concerts. She made her claim to fame by singing the National Anthem at a Brewers game in 1999. Lee and Joel have a Florida Keys rescue dog named Stanley; Lee and Stanley became Hospice Therapy certified. They volunteered at an area Cancer and Hospice Center for eight years.

While visiting home in WI last summer (2021), it was discovered that Lee was sick and she made the decision to remain here with her family. Lee and Joel were happily married 64 years. We would like to thank Saint Mary’s Rochester Radiation team, the La Crosse Mayo Cancer Center, and Hospice team.

A memorial service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, July 30th, 2022 at The Gathering Place,133 Mason St. Onalaska.  Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service.

Any donations can me made to:
Saint Judes Children’s Hospital
Key Largo Upper Keys Humane Society (101617 Overseas Hwy, Key Largo, FL 33037)

Her memorial service will be live streamed with ZOOM.  You must download the zoom app in order to view.  Below is the linkJoin Zoom Meeting.


To view her tribue video, please click the link below
View the video on the web and start sharing it on-line




  1. Cassie Gentry Valley

    Kelly and family
    I am sooo sorry to hear about your mom’s passing. Your mom was always the sweetest lady I have ever met. I always loved coming to the insurance agency and talking to her and playing with the dogs. I know our moms our joking and talking up a storm up in heaven.
    I am send my deepest condolences.

    Cassie Gentry Valley

  2. Sandra Lynghamer

    Joel and family. My prayers are with you in your time of sorrow.

    I enjoyed getting to know Lee at Onalaska Terrace enjoyed her stories and her smile was brighten my day.

  3. Dave Cleveland

    I’m so sorry to hear this, Kelly. Your mom was one of my favorite people. She was a wonderful lady.

  4. Corine Neuman

    Joel and family,
    Ed and I are saddened by the loss of Lee! She was a lovely lady! I got know her by playing tennis with her! We had a lot of fun over the years! She will be missed! Thoughts and prayers are with you!

  5. Bill & Kim Hart

    WE are very sorry for your loss. Lee was ca very special person & will be missed by all.

  6. Bob Allten

    Lee was a wonderful lady. She was a centerpiece of the performing arts group at Bear Creek, and everybody loved to hear her sing. May she rest in peace and sing in heaven. Prayers, condolences, and empathy go out to Joel and the family. She was loved.


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