Frances Lee Strong better known as Grandma Lee was an American stand up comedian who gained fame when he contested on the television series America’s Got Talent in 2009 season four. Grandma Lee died on Friday Afternoon April 24th at her assisted living facility in Jacksonville, FL, but it was in no way related to the novel coronavirus as per his son, Kelly.
Grandma Lee Biography
Grandma Lee was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She graduated from Otterbein University in the 1950s.
Grandma Lee Age
Grandma Lee was born on May 29th, 1934. She died on April 24th, 2020 at the age of 85 years.
Grandma Lee Husband
After graduating from Otterbein University, Grandma Lee married a career the United States Marine Corps member, Ben Strong. The couple moved around the world as he fulfilled his military duties, raising four children. They were living in Homestead, Florida, in 1992 when Hurricane Andrew destroyed their home. They then moved to Jacksonville where, in 1995, her husband died of cancer. They had been married for 37 years. Lee later took a buyout from her job as a phone operator from her job as a phone operator for BellSouth. She then began doing stand-up comedy in 1997.
Grandma Lee at AGT
In 2009, Grandma Lee participated in the fourth season of the reality series America’s Got Talent. Although she made it to the top 10, she was in the bottom 5 and was eliminated from the competition in the finale on September 16, 2009. She told People magazine, “[My] material is based on the truth. I go up there and wing it… but I had to clean it up for the show. I won’t say a cuss word or anything to jeopardize [myself]. I can do clean or edgy.
Her son Kelly said that his stand-up comic mom was doing shows up until November, but after a gig in Tampa, she fell in her hotel room and broke her hip. Sadly, he said she never fully recovered.
Grandma Lee Death
Grandma Lee passed away on Friday afternoon, April 24, 2020, at her assisted living facility in Jacksonville, FL, but it was not related to the novel coronavirus. According to Grandma’s family… she passed with her 2 sons holding her hands after spending the past few days reading texts from friends and Facebook posts. They say there will be a service celebrating her life once COVID-19 conditions allow for it. Her family told TMZ…”Heaven just got a whole lot funnier.”
Grandma Lee began doing stand-up after she lost her husband of 37-years to cancer in May 1995 and it helped her cope with his passing. Grandma Lee is survived by four children. Tributes have poured in online for Grandma Lee, with one Twitter fan tweeting, “We lost a comedy legend today.”
Another commented: ‘Comedy career. She was always genuine & Sweet & Loved the comedy community here in Jacksonville. She will be greatly missed & my thoughts go out to her family & friends at this time.’
I got the opportunity to meet Grandma Lee a few times throughout my comedy career. She was always genuine & sweet & LOVED the comedy community here in Jacksonville. She will be greatly missed & my thoughts go out to her family & friends at this time. pic.twitter.com/dTJD6TX8FY
— 𝐏𝐡𝐢𝐥 𝐒𝐦𝐢𝐭𝐡 🎙 (@PhiltheFilipino) April 24, 2020
Another fan added, “The world of comedy lost a great friend today. We will miss you, Grandma Lee.”