If I Were To Write My Own Obituary It Might Go Something Like This:
(Note the writer’s leeway which is what I love about fiction. Aside from my book, death references and the great grandchildren, the rest is spot on!)
Author of the popular Deadly Deadlines obituary writer series, The Last Word, Gerri Lewis died at the age of 100, at the Ridgefield, Connecticut home she loved and the setting for many of her books. She was married to Robert Lewis for over 70 years, and both were Ridgefield High School graduates.
Gerri started her career as a freelance writer, reporter and newspaper columnist for seven syndicated weeklies and won numerous awards for her writing including from the Society of Professional Journalists and the New England Press Association. Throughout her career she remained a go-to person in the community for obituaries, especially sensitive ones, because she said, “Capturing a loved one’s personality in an obituary is one of the greatest gifts you can give to the grieving.”
Over 1600 of Gerri’s writings have appeared in a variety of publications and her “How We Met” column was a popular staple of Ridgefield Magazine. She continued to write features for 068 Magazine until her death. She served as the Public Information Officer for Ridgefield’s Office of Emergency Management and during the 2020 pandemic helped residents stay safe by providing information daily. Gerri was a world traveler and, in her lifetime, visited over 60 countries. Her highest priorities, however, were always home and family. She is survived by her three children, six grandchildren and three great grandchildren. She was predeceased by her Great Pyrenees Diva, who is featured in her first book, The Last Word.
1. Grew up in Ridgefield, Connecticut and graduated from Ridgefield High School where the yearbook spelled her last name incorrectly and after over 30 years as a professional writer who has made her own share of mistakes, she forgives the yearbook committee.
2. Has been married to Robert Lewis, also an RHS grad for over 50 years and while he wasn’t her high school sweetheart, he was a football star, her big brother’s friend and she was smitten until FINALLY he looked her way. Two of their three children are RHS graduates, and four of their six grandchildren attend Ridgefield schools.
3. Loves to read, write, likes to play golf, and on occasion ski with her grandchildren, although lately all she sees is the spray of snow as they whiz by.
4. Best time of day—sunset no matter what she’s doing. Most exciting news this year—the sale of her debut novel to Crooked Lane Books.