John Joseph Lewis, 77, of Galesburg, Michigan, passed away on Saturday, April 29, 2023 at the VA Medical Center. He was born on December 8, 1945 in Kalamazoo, MI.
John was a 1964 graduate of Loy Norrix High School in Kalamazoo and a 1977 graduate of Western Michigan University. He was an educator for Special Needs students employed at Cooper Elementary in Plainwell for three years and 28 years at Climax-Scotts Schools until retiring in 2010. He was the recipient of a parent nominated award for southwest Michigan Special Needs Teacher of the Year during his tenure at C-S.
John served in the US Army from 1966-1967 as a radio teletype operator. He received a National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal and a Good Conduct Medal.
He was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Kalamazoo and the VFW in Augusta, MI.
John is survived by his wife of 46 years, Dale Ellen (DeHaan) Lewis, daughter Lana (Josh) Cooper, son Andrew (Julie) Lewis, grandchildren Savannah, Joshua Nash Cooper, Alyssa Lewis and Jordan Jackson, cousins Thomas Lewis, Rochelle (Lewis) Ferrell, and Timothy Sitterly. He as preceded in death by his father, Victor Emerson Lewis, and mother, Eugenia Margherite Marco) Lewis.
John enjoyed music and began classical violin training at age 8, playing in the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra from middle school through college. Both his talent and passion for music grew throughout John's life. He played country and bluegrass music with numerous friends in Michigan, making life-long friends with many talented musicians. He enjoyed helping others and used his music to achieve those goals by playing benefits for veterans, churches, and community events. He also loved organic gardening and landscaping and started a program for students at Climax-Scotts middle school.
John's family wishes to express our thanks and sincere appreciation to the staff and physicians at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center. The care he received from them was excellent and will remembered always.
There will be a Celebration of life service held on a later date. Arrangements by the Baxter Funeral & Cremation Service. 269-788-9800. www. baxterfuneral.com. Donations in John's memory may be made to the Lewy Body Dementia Association or the Parkinson's Foundation.