ARLINGTON - Owen Lamar “Lee” Studstill, Jr., 63, of Arlington, passed away Aug. 31, 2019 at Heartland Health Care Center in Henry after an extended illness.
Memorial services will be held at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 3 at the Mueller Funeral Home, Peru with Pastor Brett Todd of Grace United Methodist Church, LaSalle officiating. Visitation will be from 4-6 p.m. on Sept. 3 at the funeral home.
Lee was born Oct. 20, 1955 in Macon, Ga., the oldest son of Owen Lamar Studstill, Sr. and Doris Atkins Studstill. He married Melinda Morgan on Aug.15, 1986 in Swainsboro, Ga.
Survivors include his wife of Arlington; one daughter, Summer Studstill of Mendota; one brother, Cole (Kim) Studstill of Peru; and 15 nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Lee received a Bachelor’s degree in psychology from Georgia College, and a Master’s degree from the University of Alabama, Birmingham. He grew up watching his father work as a broadcaster and in the 1970s, as just a teenager, Lee worked as a newsman for a Macon radio station and helped his dad broadcast basketball and football games over dozens of radio stations all over the state of Georgia. From that beginning, Lee led the family in purchasing their first stations in Georgia. Six years later, he was instrumental in convincing the family to purchase two stations in Mendota and he and Melinda moved to Mendota from Georgia. From there, he founded the Studstill Media group of stations including stations in Streator, Peru and Spring Valley. He was the creator, president, and leader of Studstill Media for the past 37 years. Lee and Melinda served as emcees of the Mendota Sweet Corn Festival for many years in the 1990s and 2000s.
When not working, he enjoyed reading, horseback riding and running. He was introduced to a love of horses by his future wife, Melinda. They owned horses for many years and he will be missed by his equine children, Shawnee and Noble, along with his two canine children, Juno and Butterbean. He was an accomplished athlete, all-state in Georgia in high school basketball and track and field, and later played college basketball. As an adult, he found great joy in running, and successfully completed seven marathons including qualifying for, and running two times, the Boston Marathon.
He especially enjoyed his family and was a devoted husband to Melinda and a loving father of Summer. He proudly shared in Summer’s academic successes and was thrilled when she joined the family business after graduating college last year. Even after his memory suffered while battling Alzheimer’s, he could still vividly remember with joy the time 15 years ago that he spotted and rescued a dog that had been missing for several days after escaping from a friend’s car during an auto accident on Route 251.
In celebration of Lee’s love of four-legged friends, please direct any memorial donations to Friends of Strays, Princeton.
The online guestbook may be viewed and remembrances shared at www.MuellerFH.com.