Chiropractic + Naturopathic Doctor

In Memoriam – Dr. Herbert K.Lee

By Canadian Chiropractor   


It is with sadness that Canadian Chiropractor announces the peaceful
passing of Dr. Herbert K. Lee on October 2, 2012, at Toronto’s East
General Hospital.

It is with sadness that Canadian Chiropractor announces the peaceful passing of Dr. Herbert K. Lee on October 2, 2012, at Toronto’s East General Hospital. Dr. Lee was at the age of 101 years and only a month away from his 102nd birthday. He was the last surviving founder of the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College (CMCC).


Dr. Lee made a phenomenal contribution to chiropractic. He was one of a handful of great men who committed to founding CMCC as an educational institution and as a unifying force for chiropractic in Canada.


CMCC reports that “Dr. Lee was part of the steering committee that founded CMCC. He also gave its inaugural lecture on September 18, 1945 – the 50th anniversary of the first chiropractic adjustment by D.D. Palmer –  when the scheduled lecturer failed to arrive. He continued this tradition, giving the first lecture at the 1900 Bayview location when it opened, as well as the first lecture at CMCC’s current campus.”

Dr. Lee lectured well beyond retirement age, remaining a faculty member at CMCC for almost 60 years. Of CMCC, he once said, “Its greatest accomplishment has been its survival. When we talked about starting a school, people said it couldn’t be done. When the school opened, people said it would never last. I would like to see the looks on their faces now! Watching the school flourish and grow has been extremely satisfying to me!”

“Dr. Lee has been a stalwart of CMCC, imparting his knowledge of technique to multiple generations of chiropractors,” said CMCC president Dr. Jean Moss. “Dr. Lee offered monthly seminars on adjustment techniques while he was well over 90 years old.”

Dr. Herbert Lee was considered a great friend by those privileged to know him, and a mentor to a number of chiropractors still practising today. Dr. James Laws, who was both a friend and student of Dr. Lee, remembers him for both his dedication to the profession and his legendary sense of humour.”For his 75th birthday,” recalls Dr. Laws, “Herb was disappointed that his family hadn’t taken his hint for a birthday gift and, so, he went out and bought himself a brand new 16-foot catamaran, because, he said, his current 14-foot version just wasn’t fast enough.”  Dr. Laws adds that Dr. Lee’s grandchildren remember his birthday purchase well, as, over the years, they have all been taught to sail – by Dr. Lee, himself, of course – on that 16-foot vessel. 

Regarding chiropractic, Dr. Lee taught, “I’d like to see chiropractors spend adequate time in preparation for the adjustment by reducing the hypertonicity in the
surrounding musculature. Then, after making the adjustment, palpate for improvement in mobility and tension . . . and if you improve that, you’ve done a good job.” 

Dr. Lee was predeceased by his wife, Margaret, who died in 1990, but was surrounded at his passing by his loving daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. 

A visitation was held at Humphrey’s Funeral Home in Toronto on Thursday, October 25, and the funeral was held at St. Cuthbert’s Anglican Church on October 26. Memorial donations, in his name may still be made to CMCC (Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College), 6100 Leslie Street, Toronto M2H 3J1 or to a charity of your choice.

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