Robert John "Bob" Lewis, Jr., of Oakland, MD, formerly of Lake Ridge, VA, passed away on July 16, 2021, one day shy of his 80th birthday, with his loving wife, Margaret, by his side.
Born on July 17, 1941, in Grand Rapids, MI, he was the son of the late Robert John, Sr., and Hazel (Sikkenga) Lewis. Robert’s core values of honesty, fairness, and integrity were developed early on through his parents as he grew up in Michigan, but it was his quick wit and little glint in his eye that sealed his lifelong friendships. An excellent storyteller, his recounts of childhood misadventures with his friend Carl were our favorites.
Robert’s love of learning led him to the University of Michigan on a Navy ROTC scholarship. He was a Michigan man through and through and loved being a Wolverine. He especially enjoyed traveling the US and to Europe singing with the Michigan Glee Club.
While stationed in San Diego with the Navy, Robert became reacquainted with Margaret Maihofer, a school teacher and fellow Michigan graduate. Rumor has it that a kiss by the stove started a love affair that has lasted over 55 years. Robert and Margaret were married July 2, 1966, in Menominee, MI. With their Michigan ties still strong, Robert returned to the University of Michigan as a law student after his honorable discharge and 3 Bronze Stars from his service in Vietnam on a Navy destroyer. Margaret’s school teacher influence and support were apparent, as Robert graduated magna cum laude.
After law school, Robert and Margaret moved to northern Virginia where he had a distinguished career spanning over 32 years in Washington, DC A member of the DC and Michigan Bar Associations, Robert led and directed many organizations as an antitrust lawyer. He was honored at his retirement on the floor of the House of Representatives by Representative Gary Miller (CA), who summed up his career: Legislative Assistant to Michigan Senator Robert Griffin; Staff Assistant to President Nixon on the White House Domestic Council; General Counsel of the Federal Trade Commission; Partner at Ballard, Spahr, Andrews & Ingersoll; Vice President for the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association; Senior Vice President for Federal Relations at the Tobacco Institute; Vice President for Public Affairs at the Generic Pharmaceutical Industry Association; and retiring as the Deputy Executive Director of the National Association of Water Companies in 2003. Robert’s family and friends were most proud that Robert’s core values never wavered during his career, and Representative Miller pointed out that Robert’s dedication, honesty, fairness, and integrity were of the highest caliber and that his concern for others was genuine. Despite all of his accomplishments, Robert remained a humble man.
Robert’s dedication to his career was exceeded only by his dedication to his family. He always found time to hike in the sunshine, camp, fish, read, watch soccer and basketball games, lead caravans to soccer tournaments, enjoy dinners with friends, tell stories, sing birthday songs, hike in the rain, identify birds, play cards, watch Michigan football and basketball games, camp in the rain, enjoy a beer on the deck, volunteer, eat Starlight Mints, raft rivers, travel to National Parks, and instill his values and sense of humor in his daughter and son. After retiring, Robert and Margaret moved one last time to beautiful Deep Creek Lake, Maryland, where they continued to make more wonderful friends. Robert sang in the Garrett Choral Society, volunteered with the Allegheny Highlands (Nature) Conservancy, and continued to travel the US and Canada with Margaret. But it was visiting with his children and grandchildren that he loved the most. We are all so lucky to have had him in our lives.
Family was his greatest joy. Robert is survived by his wife of 55 years, Margaret; daughter, Jennifer Bass (Scott); son, Geoffrey Lewis (Jennifer); grandchildren, Tyler Bass, Caroline Bass, Jacob Lewis, and Joshua Lewis; and sister, Jeanne Montie (James).
Friends and family will be received at the C & S Fredlock Funeral Home, P.A., 21 N 2nd St., Oakland for visitation on Thursday, July 22, 2021, from 6 to 8 PM. A funeral and committal service will be held in the funeral home on Friday, July 23, 2021, at 10 AM with Rev. Dr. Matthew Paugh officiating. Military honors will be accorded by the combined honor guard of the American Legion Post #71 and the Deer Park VFW Post #10077. A private interment will be held in Rocky Gap Veterans Cemetery, Flintstone, MD.
For those so inclined, expressions of sympathy may be made in Robert’s name to some of his favorite organizations: Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), The Nature Conservancy, The United Way of Garrett County, Alzheimer's Disease Research, and Flight ‘93 National Memorial.
The C & S Fredlock Funeral Home is honored to be serving the family of Robert Lewis at this time. Words of comfort may be expressed to the family at www.csfredlockfh.com