I became, so others can be. Born in the beautiful state of South Carolina, I entered this world as a very unique child, with six fingers on each hand. It was at that moment that my paternal grandmother stated I would be a blessed child. I recall bouncing between both my grandmothers’ and my aunts’ homes. As a single mother, my mom was pursuing a college degree to create a better life for the both of us. As a result of this, I learned how to be independent early on in life. Although my mother was on the path to achieving her goals and had the support of family members to help raise me, I recall feeling abandoned, but I did not recognize that’s what it was until later on in life.
My childhood was filled with a lot of great memories. Never did I lack anything that was needed, nor anything that I wanted. There was a lot of love and a lot of morals instilled in me at an early age, yet there was a hint of vulnerability there. One day while attending school, I recall a substitute teacher who decided she wanted her flesh to benefit from my vulnerability. As a young adolescent, I fell victim to her prey on my body. That day would change the trajectory of my life because later on, I discovered she did the same to another friend.
Although I felt violated, as a young boy, I felt good that an older woman was interested in me. When I discovered her interaction with my friend, I felt my first lesson of mistrust and betrayal. When I started attending South Carolina State University to major in Biology, my mother’s finances were attacked by the IRS. She was bringing home $60 per week. This setback affected our family a great deal. We couldn’t afford housing for me, so I slept on the floors of some of my friends’ places. I slipped into a major state of depression. It came to an all-time low when I attempted to commit suicide. At that moment I heard the voice of the Lord say, “If you end your life, you will never see the expected end I have for you.” I immediately began to repent and from that moment my life turned for the better.
I was blessed to be accepted to the Medical University of South Carolina Pharmacy School. That process was very stressful, yet rewarding. Upon matriculating from MUSC, I became the first black male pharmacist from Eutawville, SC. I then set my heart and actions on giving back. I thought about how hard it was for me financially at SCSU, so in 2006, I founded the M. A. Lee Scholarship Fund awarding scholarships to students attending a four year college or university. In 2016, the Medical University of South Carolina established the Dr. Maurice A. Lee Endowment to attract and award financial assistance to minorities wanting to pursue a pharmacy degree. Currently, I am acting and producing in Los Angeles. I am a firm believer that the steps of a good man are ordered by God. What happens to us happens for us and we become so others can be.