Sheldon Lee, the longtime music director at Blessed Mother Teresa parish, was badly wounded in a stabbing attack on Monday in his apartment complex in the South End. His condition was put at “stable” on Wednesday after he underwent surgery on Monday and Tuesday.
His alleged assailant, 41-year-old David Eng, a neighbor in the complex, was arraigned on a charge of assault with intent to murder on Tuesday and held on $100,000 bail. He is scheduled to be back in court on Sept. 4.
Lee, 65, is a gifted musician and vocalist who as a young man traveled to Italy to train for operatic studies with Luciano Pavarotti.
“For many years, he was the music director at St. William’s,” said Rev. Jack Ahern, pastor of Mother Teresa parish. “He’s the head of the choir here, and he does all the music arrangements at Masses and funerals. He’s a gifted musician.”
The group regularly performs at the 11 a.m. Sunday Mass each week and had last performed on June 7.
Lee was a music teacher in Sudbury before his retirement. He also performs with the Boston Opera Company and the Handel Hayden Society.
Marta Carney, a longtime member of the Mother Teresa Adult Chorus described Lee as “a great solo tenor. He’s amazing, full of life,” she added.
“We took the summer off,” said Carney. “We had a summer gathering with Sheldon at my house on Sat., July 25. He played the piano.”
The day before the assault, Carney said, Lee was making plans for a return to performing after Labor Day, with 12 new musical pieces planned for the fall season.
“He called me last Sunday and said we need to schedule a practice choir rehearsal at my house next week,” said Carney, who is confident Lee will return. “He has a beautiful solo voice, and we’re hoping that with this injury, that his voice isn’t, you know, compromised. He will be good, he will be great. He’s a fighter.”