Dwight LeRoy Cobb (1932-2016)
June 28, 2016
Lee Cobb, as he preferred to be called, lived a full and comprehensive life during those 84 years, a life filled with achievements and service. Basically, his life can be divided into three major segments.
One: His military career in the U.S. Navy. He joined the Navy as a seaman recruit in April 1951 at the age of 19. He served continuously for 27 years until he retired in 1978 after having been promoted through nine enlisted grades and four warrant officer grades, retiring with the rank of chief warrant officer four. During his Navy career, Lee served on a variety of ships and visited 58 countries.
Two: His involvement with Pearl Harbor – Honolulu Branch 46 of the Fleet Reserve Association. Lee was a member of Branch 46 for about 40 years. He served as the branch treasurer for more than 15 years and was a member of the board of directors for about 30 years. Lee never desired to be the “man in charge”; he much preferred to lead from behind the scenes. And, at Branch 46, he had a number of leadership achievements. He was an active member of the USS Arizona Memorial Museum Foundation (AMMF), which raised money to have the first visitor center built at the USS Arizona Memorial. Lee chaired Branch 46’s building committee, which enabled the construction of the million-dollar Branch Home. Later, Lee served as the manager of the Fleet Lounge and finally retired from active involvement in Branch 46 at the age of 80.
Three: His involvement with the USS Arizona Memorial. After serving the AMMF so effectively, Lee was again a founding member, this time of the Arizona Memorial Museum Association (AMMA), which was to become the tax-exempt partner of the National Park Service in operating the USS Arizona Memorial. Lee was one of seven founding members of the original board of directors and outlived five of them, faithfully serving until his death. During his tenure of service, Lee seldom missed a meeting of the board and served effectively as a member of several committees of the board. Lee participated in the first-ever strategic planning session of the board that resulted in a host of changes to AMMA in conjunction with a new strategic road map for the organization. Later, AMMA rebranded itself as Pacific Historic Parks and Lee continued to serve.
During these three segments of his life, Lee also was a husband and a father. He was first married to a Japanese woman who bore him two sons. She passed away in 1990. Lee remarried in 1991 to his current wife Julie. They enjoyed traveling.
The members of Branch 46 and Pacific Historic Parks all mourn the passing of Lee Cobb.
Dwight “Lee” Cobb Chief Petty Officer Bungalows Restoration Fund
It is befitting that a fund be established in Lee Cobb’s name for the restoration of these bungalows on Ford Island. Lee was a sailor, at one time a chief petty officer, whose career was focused on the remembrance of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The NPS, with the help of donations from the public, is restoring these bungalows.
We ask Pacific Historic Park members and friends to consider a significant donation to this project. You may donate online or by calling (808) 954-8726.