Eleanor (Kit) Motley Lee, 96, of Chestnut Hill and Westwood, died peacefully at home on April 3 with all her family around her.

Born in Boston in 1921, to Nancy Barton Motley and John Lothrop Motley, she grew up in the Back Bay with her sisters Elizabeth Motley (Ames) and Nancy Motley (Adams), and a brother, John L. Motley, who predeceased her.

She met and married her first husband, William Temple Emmet, on the eve of World War II and they had a daughter, Kathleen. In 1945, Kit first came to the Vineyard to visit her mother in law Helen (Emmet) Philbin at Chappaquonsett in Vineyard Haven. Kit’s husband, a B-17 Flying Fortress pilot with the Eighth Air Force, was killed over Germany in 1945.

Three years later, Kit met Richard Ward Lee. They married and had three daughters; Kristin, Linsey, and Susannah. The household was filled with the chaos of four girls, many dogs and cats, and love. They remained close with the extended Emmet clan, and became seasonal residents at the Pink House at Chappaquonsett.

Kit shared her love of books, hymns, poetry and the outdoors with those around her, and after her family was grown, she turned her warm and caring nature to the cause of helping others. She attended Episcopal Divinity School at Harvard, and dedicated herself to working with pregnancy counseling and the Samaritans suicide hotline in Boston. Her empathy and love for people brought strength to many. She was also a volunteer at the Arnold Arboretum and a longtime member of the Shakespeare Club.

A story held dear by her children was her description of walking the beach at Quansoo with her husband Richard on a February weekend. The winter dunes were white with snow. As they watched, six or seven snowy owls rose from the dunes without making a sound. The white cloud of owls separated from the white dunes. They sailed off silently.

Kit had many lifelong friends and beloved relatives. She leaves her two sisters, her daughters Kathleen Emmet of Washington D.C., Kristin Lee and her husband Jim Huston of Nahant, Linsey Lee and her husband Brendan O’Neill of West Tisbury, and Susannah Lee and her husband Tom Young of Buckland. Also her grandchildren William, Jonathan and Emmet Darman, Wren and Mathea Huston, Mya O’Neill, and Rosey and Sarah Young, and great-grandchildren, Jane, Emma, and Edie Darman. She was predeceased by her husband of 52 years, Richard Lee.

A service will be held at the Church of the Redeemer in Chestnut Hill on April 29 at 2 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to the Vineyard Conservation Society or the Vineyard Museum.