Lillian Lewis, wife of Rep. John Lewis, remembered - New York News

Lillian Lewis, wife of Rep. John Lewis, remembered

Posted: Updated:
Lillian Lewis, the wife of Congressman John Lewis, passed away on Dec. 31, 2012. Lillian Lewis, the wife of Congressman John Lewis, passed away on Dec. 31, 2012.
ATLANTA -

Family and friends are fondly remembering the life of Congressman's John Lewis' wife. Lillian Lewis died Monday at Emory Hospital in Atlanta.

Although she stayed mostly out of the public eye, Lillian Lewis supported and advised her husband for more than four decades.

Xernona Clayton says she and Lillian Lewis were best friends for nearly 50 years.  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. introduced the two Los Angeles natives, who were both passionate about the civil rights movement
in the South.

"She knew music. She knew art. She knew literature. She knew places and things. She was well-traveled, well versed, knowledgeable about so many things. And unimpressed with her knowledge. A lot of people want flaunt it…Lillian never did that," said Clayton.

It was that intellect and humility that compelled Xernona Clayton to introduce her friend Lillian Miles to a civil rights activist named John Lewis on New Year's Eve in 1967. By the end of 1968, the two were married.

"Lillian said, ‘I do and I will,' and she did," said Clayton.
   
Clayton says Mrs. Lewis was active and supportive of Lewis' role in the civil rights movement and was a close advisor in his political career and his historic election to Congress.

"Although she was not a public person, her commitment was to him, not to what she did or did not want. So she gave it her all. She would always do the whispering kind of things, ‘Why don't you do this, why don't you call that person?  why don't you secure the telephone from this person.' That is the way she would counsel him and give him the benefit of her thinking," said Clayton.

Clayton says Lillian Lewis should be remembered for her active in the movement for civil rights in Georgia and throughout the southeast.

"She knew every speech she ever heard of Martin Luther King's. She knew his speeches word for word.," said Clayton. "We were all born into this world. And so many people occupy space. And that is it. Lillian came into this world and she made a difference in her space, so many wonderful memories. My good friend is gone but the memories will stay."

Lillian Lewis also leaves behind quite a legacy at Clark Atlanta University. From 1984 to 2003, she served in a number of roles focusing on international affairs and student development.

Clayton says Lewis' many trips to Africa and the Caribbean broadened Lewis' ability to guide her students into careers in service -- something she was deeply committed to.

Lillian Lewis was 73 years old. Funeral arrangements have not been announced.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • 2 U.S. marshals, 1 NYPD detective shot in Manhattan

    2 U.S. marshals, 1 NYPD detective shot in Manhattan

    Monday, July 28 2014 2:32 PM EDT2014-07-28 18:32:05 GMT
    Two deputy U.S. marshals, an NYPD detective, and a sexual assault suspect have been shot in a shootout in lower Manhattan, officials said. Speaking at a news conference, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the marshals and cop were taken to a local hospital with apparently non-life threatening injuries.
    Two deputy U.S. marshals, an NYPD detective, and a sexual assault suspect have been shot in a shootout in lower Manhattan, officials said. Speaking at a news conference, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the marshals and cop were taken to a local hospital with apparently non-life threatening injuries.
  • Massive brawl at NJ wedding

    Massive brawl at NJ wedding

    Monday, July 28 2014 2:24 PM EDT2014-07-28 18:24:34 GMT
    As many as 300 people became involved in a massive brawl at a New Jersey wedding hall that ended with two arrests on Sunday night.  Middletown police say that the fight broke out at about 10:30 p.m. at the Jacques Reception Hall on Palmer Ave. in Middletown.
    As many as 300 people became involved in a massive brawl at a New Jersey wedding hall that ended with two arrests on Sunday night.  Middletown police say that the fight broke out at about 10:30 p.m. at the Jacques Reception Hall on Palmer Ave. in Middletown.
  • Accused Long Island cop killer found guilty

    Accused Long Island cop killer found guilty

    Monday, July 28 2014 12:49 PM EDT2014-07-28 16:49:08 GMT
    An ex-convict suspected of gunning down a Nassau County police officer and then fatally shooting a carjacking victim was found guilty on all counts in the murders on Monday. Darrell Fuller, 33, shot and killed Police Officer Arthur Lopez in October 2012 who suspected he had been involved in a hit-and-run car accident. Authorities said Fuller then fled that shooting and killed the second victim, Raymond Facey of Queens, while stealing his vehicle.
    An ex-convict suspected of gunning down a Nassau County police officer and then fatally shooting a carjacking victim was found guilty on all counts in the murders on Monday. Darrell Fuller, 34, shot and killed Police Officer Arthur Lopez in October 2012 who suspected he had been involved in a hit-and-run car accident. Authorities said Fuller then fled that shooting and killed the second victim, Raymond Facey of Queens, while stealing his vehicle.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices