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George Lee's Story

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Dr. George Lee Echols Jr., died Feb. 11, 2018 in Milledgeville, at the age of 85 following a brief battle with cancer.
The family will receive visitors Thursday, Feb. 15 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Moores Funeral Home in Milledgeville. The funeral will be held on Friday, Feb. 16 at 11 a.m. at St. Stephens Episcopal Church in Milledgeville, with Father David Probst officiating.
George was born and reared in Milledgeville, the third child of Dr. George Lee Echols and Marie Stembridge Echols. His sisters were Louisa Echols Meals and Margaret Echols Hendrickson. George's life was completely devoted to his family, service to his country, and the thousands of patients whose lives he touched with his skills as a physician, a healer and a friend.
He attended Georgia Military College (GMC) in Milledgeville from first grade through junior college, often catching a ride to school with the mailman from his home on the grounds of Central State Hospital. In high school, George was a co-founder of the GMC Officers Club. While at GMC he met Polly Farr, a student at Peabody School across town and whose mother was one of George's teachers. They married in 1954, and they remained inseparable until his death.
George graduated from Emory University, where he was a member of Sigma Chi fraternity. He entered the U.S. Army as an officer in 1952, serving as a weapons instructor at Ft. Benning during the Korean War. He attended the Medical College of Georgia (MCG) in Augusta and began his medical pursuits with an internship in Asheville, N.C. In 1960, he started a general medicine practice in Milledgeville, and after several years, completed additional training in pediatrics. With his wife Polly and four small children, he moved to Augusta and established a thriving pediatrics practice. He also served several terms as chairman of pediatrics at University and St. Joseph's hospitals and was appointed associate clinical professor of pediatrics at MCG.
After retiring from private practice, George returned with Polly to their hometown of Milledgeville, where George continued his medical career. He served as medical director of the Medical Surgical Hospital of Central State Hospital. George later became medical director of the Developmental Disabilities Division and clinical director for Nursing Home Services.
In 2017, George received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from GMC, given for his many years of service to the college and the community of Milledgeville. His roles with GMC included leadership on GMC's campaign for its new prep school, president of the GMC Alumni Association, and trustee of the GMC Foundation. He was a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society, a recipient of the President's Award from MCG, a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and a Diplomate of the American Board of Pediatrics.
George is survived by his wife of 64 years, Pauline Farr Echols of Milledgeville. Also surviving are four children: George Lee Echols, III (Margaret Anthony) of Atlanta; Ellen Echols Purdum (David) of Decatur; Erin Echols Pervis (David) of Kiev, Ukraine; and Martha Echols Mixon (George) of Nairobi, Kenya. His nine grandchildren are Jordan Echols, Jackson Echols, Clara Pervis, Josiah Pervis, Beth Mixon Seo (Chris), Carrie Mixon, James Mixon, Nathan Mixon, and Laura Mixon. Also surviving are a niece, a nephew, and several cousins.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to the Dr. George L. Echols Scholarship of the Georgia Military College Foundation, 201 E. Greene St., Milledgeville, GA 31061; or to St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, P.O. Box 309, Milledgeville, GA 31059-0309.
Visit www.mooresfuneralhome.com to express tributes.
Moores Funeral Home & Crematory has charge of arrangements.
Published on February 12, 2018
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