Interview by Abernathy Cochran intern and Gainesville High senior Grady Vardeman
Meet Dee Lee! Dee is a property manager with The Norton Agency and has a very interesting background. Dee has gone scuba diving with sharks, has jumped out of airplanes more times than he can count, has a black belt in martial arts, and to top it off was in the 10th Special Forces group. Dee is just one of the interesting people you’ll meet in Hall County!
We want to thank Dee for recently sitting down with us and telling us more about his life and love of Hall County.
Question: Have you always lived in Hall County?
Answer: “No, I moved from Houston to Gainesville in 1993, so in October I’ll have lived in Gainesville for 26 years.”
Q: Which branch of the military did you serve in?
A: “I was in the 10th Special Forces Group from 1982-1986.”
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Hall County, and what do you love there?
A: “I go to a lot of restaurants, so this is a hard one, but the one I go to the most is Yellowfin. I really love the fresh seafood and raw oysters.”
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be? And why?
A: “Tokyo, Japan because of my martial arts background. It’s something I’ve always wanted to see.”
Q: Do you have your black belt?
A: “Yes, I got it about two years ago when I picked martial arts backup. I study at Full Throttle Fitness here in Gainesville on Main Street. I do it four to six times a week, I do karate, cardio kickboxing, and sometimes jiu-jitsu.”
Q: What advice would you give a crowd of people?
A: “80% of life is showing up, show up and be on time. It makes a great first impression.”
Q: What is something on your bucket list?
A: “I’ve almost completed my bucket list, I’ve jumped out of planes, I scuba dived, I scuba dived with sharks, I’ve climbed mountains, I was a Green Beret. I’d like to do more traveling, I’d like to see the capitals of Europe and Eastern Europe. I just need a good ending to my bucket list.”
Q: What is your favorite music or 3 bands you would like to see dead or alive?
A: “Favorite music is rock and roll, and the three bands I’d like to see are the Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, and ZZ Top.”
Q: What current or former business makes you the most nostalgic about Hall County?
A: “The Norton Agency, it was one of the first signs I saw when I moved to Gainesville and is located in a very nostalgic location on Green Street.”
Q: What is your favorite thing about Hall County?
A: “I have felt more at home in Hall County than anywhere else I’ve lived in my life. It’s a small-town feel with big-city amenities.”
Q: What is something interesting that most people don’t know about you?
A: “I have a fear of rock climbing, not many people know that about me.”
Q: What three words or phrases that come to mind when you think of the word home?
A: “Family, security, and peace.”
Q: If you were cast into a major motion picture and had the choice of anyone to be your co-star, who would you choose?
A: “Sylvester Stallone.”