Mrs. Claretha Lewis was born in Waycross, Georgia to the late Thomas and Rosetta White. She grew up in Waycross, Georgia where she attended high school. She completed her undergraduate degree in Education at Claflin College and her master’s degree at New York University. She married Walter Lewis, Sr. in 1954 and lived in Baxley, Georgia where they both taught high school. They reared five children, Walter Jr., Vanessa, Reginald, Charles and Rose. Mrs. Lewis served her community over the years as a member of various organizations such as the Appling Community League and NAACP. She was a member of the Thankful New Jersey Baptist Church and later joined the First African Missionary Baptist Church. She taught high school for 30 years and loved to play the piano for the church choir. Her fraternal participation included the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Worthy Matron of Adah Chapter #3 Order of Eastern Star, Treasurer of the Mary L. Ayers Assembly #209, Past Ruler of the Mary L. Ayers Assembly, member of the Heroines of Jericho, Past State Ruler of the Order of the Golden Circle and Past Commandress of Ossipie Court #186 Daughter of Isis.
Survivors include two sons: Reginald Lewis (Johnnie Mae) and Charles Lewis; two daughters: Vanessa Lewis Gillispie (Manuel) and Sheila Rose Lewis; daughter-in law, Vivian Ogden Lewis; five grandchildren: Sherrie Lewis (Randy Harrison), Mukhina Boone (Deshun), Danena Gaines (Jason), Tiffany Lewis, Mitchell Paulk; seven greatgrandchildren: Alana Boone, Dylan Boone, Jaden Boone, Sidney Lewis Gaines, Kaleigh Boone, Vivian Rose Harrison and Ivy Gaines; brothers-in-law; Alexander Lewis (Berlene), Franklin Lewis, Andrew Lewis and Charles M. Lewis (Sharon); sisters-in-law: Velma Lewis and Sharon Washington Lewis; many nieces and nephews; and a host of other relatives and friends.
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