Lee Chun Shin “Jimmy” Yip, 93, of Cranston, RI, passed away peacefully on May 7, 2020 at Hope Health in Providence. His beloved late wife was Lily Ping Soo (Tow) Yip. He was born in Macau when it was a Portuguese colony, and he was the son of the late Loi On Yip and late Oi Mai (Ng) Yip of Hong Kong.
Lee survived many hardships and persevered to provide great opportunities for his family. His family had various businesses on mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau where Lee spent his childhood. Most of the mainland businesses were lost during the war and the following political upheaval. As a child he was scarred by shrapnel when he was wounded by enemy aircraft in a playground. He made a terrifying night-time escape with his mother from Japanese controlled China to Macau where he grew up during WWII. Lee moved to Hong Kong where he obtained an associate degree from the Chicago Technical Institute. Later he met Lily, fell in love, married, and had four children.
In their 30’s, Lee and Lily left their native country, friends and families to come to America to provide their children prospects for a better education and future. They made many sacrifices, learned a new language, adopted a new culture, and worked hard becoming proud citizens in 1973. These children achieved their parents’ goals by serving and protecting their new country (as members of the USN), developing innovative high tech and biotech products, and educating the children of tomorrow. Today, Lee’s grandchildren are continuing the family’s legacy of contributing to the success of the United States in the areas of education, medicine, high technology, and the military (USAF).
Lee was employed at the iconic Luke’s Restaurant in downtown Providence behind City Hall from the 1960’s for over 20 years, first as a waiter and later as a chef. He retired in his 60’s. Lee’s favorite hobby was fishing. He loved to wake his children up at the crack of dawn and drag them with him fishing, but not before filling them up with Dunkin’ Donuts and coffee milk. Other times he would bring home interesting sea creatures, like a three-foot horseshoe crab he’d found on Narragansett Beach, to delight his kids and then turn around and drive them back to the sea.
He was a quiet and gentle man who enjoyed history. He was a Patriots fan and would not miss a game and enjoyed watching fast-paced games like basketball. A self-described “homebody”, he indulged his wife and traveled with her to California, Denver, S. Dakota, Seattle, Vancouver, Toronto, Niagara Falls, the Finger Lakes, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, China, and Bermuda. He spent many weekends in Boston enjoying dim sum and the markets. He loved making turkey, steak and baked stuffed lobsters, and his indulgences included carrot cake and chocolate cream pie from Gregg’s.
Lee is survived by his 4 children and their spouses, his sister-in-law, two sisters, 7 grandchildren and their spouses, 3 great-grandchildren, and 11 nieces and nephews.
A private burial ceremony will be held at the Pawtuxet Memorial Park in Warwick, RI, on May 12th. Donations to Hope Health in his name would be appreciated for their wonderful care, but is not necessary. Just remember him kindly and stay safe.
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