|Funeral set Thursday for children’s champion Polly Meriwether-Lewis|
|Monday, 04 March 2013 14:48 | Written by Valerie J. Morgan|
DECATUR—The funeral for South DeKalb community activist Polly Meriwether-Lewis will be held on Thursday, 11 a.m., at Greater Travelers Rest Baptist Church, 4650 Flat Shoals Parkway.
The longtime champion for children was recovering from surgery when she was found dead in her home last week. Ms. Meriwether-Lewis lived in the Brook Glen subdivision. She was 63.
Lithonia resident Dianne Piper, a longtime friend of Meriwether-Lewis and sorority sister, said Sunday was an especially tough day. She really missed attending the worship service with her good friend at Greater Travelers Rest, where Meriwether-Lewis was a member for 39 years. She, Meriwether-Lewis and another friend, Joyce Gilchrist, usually had dinner together every Sunday after church.
“We had a ritual. Polly would text every Sunday morning “r u on the way?” and I would text back “on the way!,” said Piper, who knew Meriwether-Lewis for 13 years. “Polly sat on the aisle, and I sat next to her,” said Piper. “She would hold the spot next to her empty, even when she knew I wasn’t coming. Yesterday, I sat down on the end in her spot. Moved by the outpouring of love and condolences by nearby worshippers, I moved over a little and made some room on the end. I could feel her smiling.”
Meriwether-Lewis made a tremendous impact as a board member of the South DeKalb YMCA Academies, serving from 1993 to the present, said executive director Tamra Shepherd.
“I always admired Polly's commitment to serve others and willingness to volunteer as a Board Member for more than 20 years to make a difference in the South DeKalb community through YMCA programs,” Shepherd said. “She was instrumental in supporting the development of both academy programs and served as the first board chair when the academies became a stand alone branch. Our personal connection came by discovering we were both mothers of boys and you knew she loved both of her sons and grandchildren dearly. I am forever grateful for Polly's contribution to our South DeKalb Y Families and will always cherish our friendship.”
Shepherd said the Y planned to make a special tribute on behalf of Meriwether-Lewis’ contributions to the Y.
Ms. Meriwether-Lewis was a charter member of Alpha Kappa Alpha - Eta Mu Chapter sorority at Georgia State University. She was a former liaison and corporate secretary for Grady Healthcare System. She retired from the Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority as an executive liaison as well.
Meriwether-Lewis was born in Clarksville, Tennessee. She is survived by two sons, Barry Lewis of New Jersey; and Justin Lewis of Atlanta.
Gregory B. Levett & Sons is handling the funeral arrangements.