William Michael Lewis, 87, passed away peacefully on March 2, 2018, after a life filled with family, friends and love.
Bill was born on July 4, 1930 in Providence, RI, the only child of Anna (Solomon) Lewis and Israel Budner Lewis. He attended Peekskill Military Academy in New York where he was a club officer, the quarterback of the football team, and also played varsity lacrosse, soccer and basketball. He then attended Rutgers University before being drafted into the US Army in 1950.
While serving a tour of duty in Japan and Korea during the Korean War, he earned three medals, including the United National Service Medal, the Korean Service Medal with the Bronze Star, and the National Defense Service Medal.
When he returned home from the Army, he took a fateful trip to the beach in Narragansett where he met the love of his life, Lois. They married in 1955 and moved to Cranston, RI, to start their lives together.
Together, Bill and Lois had three children: Debra, Michael and Steven. Bill was the third generation owner of the family business, M. Solomon Casket Company, where he worked for nearly 46 years before handing the reins of the business over to his sons. After 40 years in Cranston, he and his wife designed and built their dream home in Warwick, RI. Then, in 1998, they retired and spent winters at their home in Naples, FL. But each summer, he and Lois returned to Bonniecrest in Newport, RI to spend time with family and celebrate his birthday with fireworks on the Fourth of July.
Bill and Lois were inseparable in their 60 years of marriage: traveling the world, playing tennis, bridge, golf, sailing, and attending the theater and ballet. Bill was an avid stamp collector and enjoyed playing improvised music on the piano. He loved watching football and kept up with everything in politics, so he was always up for a debate. Bill was also very active in his community, serving on various committees and boards.
When Lois passed away two years ago, Bill never truly recovered from the loss. She was the center of his world and some would say he died of a broken heart. He was a deeply caring man who always put his family first. Bill will be remembered for his passion for living and his generosity to others.
He is survived by his children Debra Lewis Hogan and her husband Lawrence of Boxford, Michael Lewis and his wife Brenda of East Greenwich, RI, and Steven Lewis and his wife, Kathryn, of East Greenwich, RI; his five grandchildren Cory, Rachel, John, Elana, and Cara and her husband Darren; and his sister-in-law Marcia Halpern and her husband Robert.
Funeral services were held on March 5 in Temple Sinai, 30 Hagen Ave., Cranston, RI. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Bill’s memory may be made to Care Dimensions (Hospice), 75 Sylvan St., Danvers, MA 01923, or to your favorite charity. For online condolences, please visit www.ShalomMemorialChapel.com.