22 Jul 2013

D. Harcourt Lees, Jr., M.F.H.

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D. Harcourt Lees Jr.

The Fauquier newspaper provided an enviable obituary.

D. Harcourt Lees Jr. of Warrenton, known to many as the quintessential Virginia gentleman, died at home Sunday, July 21, after a brief illness.

Mr. Lees, 91, for decades owned and operated an insurance and real estate firm. He was a past president of the Fauquier County Chamber of Commerce and the Fauquier Club and a former director of The Fauquier Bank. He was a longtime member of Warrenton Rotary Club.

He had a lifelong passion for horse sports. Mr. Lees served as the Warrenton Hunt Master of Foxhounds from 1968 to 1981. He continued to ride to the hounds until 2001.

A Warrenton native, he loved practical jokes and parties.

Mr. Lees and the late Billy Wilbur made their legendary “Midnight Ride” after a hunt ball in the 1950s. On horseback and still in tuxedos, they visited a half-dozen farms, procuring cocktails along the way.

A 1997 profile in The Fauquier Citizen, described Mr. Lees’ impeccable manners. Always well dressed — or “turned out” — he bowed and tipped his hat when meeting friends and strangers on the street.

“His manners are flawless,” the late Byrd Greene told Don Del Rosso, who wrote the newspaper profile. “But they’re manners from the heart; he’s a gentleman because it’s inside of him.”

Molliter ossa cubent.

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