Developed Chinese radio show in U.S.

Frank Lee, who developed one of the first Chinese radio programs in the U.S., died of undisclosed causes Oct. 20 at his daughter’s home in Walnut Creek, Calif. He was 79.

Born in San Jose, Calif., Lee enlisted in the Air Force during World War II and was stationed in Kunming, China. After his service, he graduated from San Jose State U. and later become an engineer for the Defense Dept. in San Francisco and Washington.

Lee broadcast the nightly “Voice of Chinatown,” which aired news and music from Hong Kong. His wife, Nancy, was the voice of the program, which was broadcast in San Francisco and New York from 1956 to 1968.

In 1964, Lee started distributing Chinese films to major U.S. and Canadian cities and later opened Mandarin movie theaters in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. The salles closed in the mid-1980s, as Chinese movies became available on video and television.

Lee is survived by his four children.

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