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Former Lebanon City Manager Greg Lewis dies at 74

  • Lebanon City Manager Greg Lewis meets with the Valley News Editorial Board for an interview Wednesday, June 22, 2011. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Lebanon City Manager Greg Lewis is reflected in a studio light at CATV in White River Junction, Vt., before his weekly show begins on April 18, 2013. (Valley News - Sarah Priestap) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Lebanon City Manager Greg Lewis is photographed with his dog, Olive, outside his home in West Lebanon, N.H., on Jan. 3, 2015. (Valley News - Ariana van den Akker) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 4/9/2021 9:58:53 PM
Modified: 4/9/2021 9:58:48 PM

LEBANON — Former City Manager Greg Lewis, who helped guide Lebanon through its recovery efforts following Tropical Storm Irene, died last week in a hospital near his home in Lockport, N.Y., after being hospitalized a few days earlier for internal bleeding. He was 74.

Lewis, a Kansas native who had worked as county manager in Niagara, N.Y., served in Lebanon for 4½ years, starting in early 2011.

He helped the city clean up and rebuild after Tropical Storm Irene, which flooded parts of Route 12A in August 2011, and to recover from major flooding in the summer of 2013.

A squad leader in the U.S. Army, Lewis earned a Bronze Star for valor in the Vietnam War. He went on to earn a law degree, ran legal services for the Black Hills Indian Reservation in South Dakota, and then entered municipal and county management.

In Lebanon, he also worked with other municipal managers in the Upper Valley, sometimes having them as guests on his cable TV access show on CATV.

“He served in Vietnam, honored his fellow soldiers and often posted memories of their life together, came home forever changed and put the impact the war had on him to work in public service,” said Hanover Town Manager Julia Griffin, who stayed in touch weekly with Lewis by Facebook. ”I will miss him, his wonderful political insights and his kindness.”

Former Lebanon Mayor Georgia Tuttle said Lewis “treasured his time here in Lebanon and chose the Soldiers Memorial Building as the ‘resting place’ for his military legacy,” including his medals from Vietnam.

Tuttle said she was aware of his service but didn’t realize it included jumping from helicopters into combat until she learned of his death.

“I know Greg is singing and marching to his favorite U.S. Cavalry song, Garryowen,” Tuttle said. “(He was) a very good and kind man who gave his all to others.”

Lewis retired in part because of health problems that he and his wife, Ruth, were dealing with. He said at the time he had enjoyed his tenure in Lebanon. “The city charter is one of the stronger city manager charters I’ve ever seen,” Lewis said. “I was empowered, and with department heads, they do better work if you can empower them.”

Survivors include his wife and their three adult children, Ben, Kate and Zack.

Lewis also was an animal lover which presented no small challenge in finding a home in West Lebanon as renters. At the time of his departure, he and Ruth had a cat and two dogs, including a bulldog that had lost its sight to glaucoma. They ultimately returned to their home in Lockport, northeast of Buffalo, and his obituary noted that Lewis was a “devout animal lover and could frequently be seen wrangling his pet bulldogs, golden retrievers and an assortment of attitudinal cats.”

News staff writer John P. Gregg can be reached at jgregg@vnews.com.




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