Lewis William Gregory, of 1936 Henry's Mill Road, Java, passed away Saturday morning, Dec. 26, 2009, at the Chatham Health Care Center.
He was born in Java June 2, 1923, a son of the late Samuel Stone Gregory Sr. and Mary Stone Gregory.
He lived his entire life on the land upon which he was born. He was a graduate of Spring Garden High School and attended Virginia Polytechnic Institute.
Mr. Gregory was a tobacco farmer. He did not cultivate large acreage but he took great pride in producing tobacco of high quality. He was known to advise, “quality has no substitute and every job is the signature of the one who does it.” The highlight of his career was the winning with his son the Commissioners Most Perfect Bundle of Tobacco Contest at the Southern Flue Cured Tobacco Festival for six successive years. After that he was quoted as saying, “The hallmark of a champion is the ability to duplicate his achievements!”
Mr. Gregory was a collector of many things, locks, bottles, keys, etc., but his coin collection was his most interesting. He said that to study the history of coins was to have an intense study of the history of the country. He was a life member of the Numismatic Association of America.
He loved cats. He was a Tabby breeder of the American Red Tabby. It was rare that there was not a cat in his lap when he was sitting. He also loved his Jack Russell dog, Tid-Bit, who was always at his feet.
Mr. Gregory was a life time member of Shockoe Baptist Church, where he served in many capacities. He taught Sunday school, and served as a deacon, trustee and was always a loyal member.
Mr. Gregory was involved in organizing the 640 Rescue Squad and was very proud of that organization.
In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by a son, Ralph Lewis; and two brothers, Samuel Stone Gregory, Jr., and James Banister Gregory Sr.
He is survived by his wife, Nancy McCauley Gregory, of the home; a son, David Gregory and his wife, Ruth, of Java; a daughter, Hannah Gregory Diller and husband, Bud, of Boone, N.C.; three grandchildren, William Gregory Leonard and his wife Heather, Adam Gregory, and Christiana Gregory; and three great-grandchildren, William Leonard, Alex Leonard and Maleah Leonard; seven nephews; and four nieces.
Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2009, at Shockoe Baptist Church, with the Rev. Curtis English and the Rev. Mike Jones officiating. Burial will follow in Hillcrest Cemetery in Chatham.
The family will receive friends from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 28, 2009, at Shockoe Baptist Church and at other times will be at the residence, 1936 Henry's Mill Road.
Memorials may be sent to 640 Community Rescue Squad, Riceville-Java Volunteer Fire Department or to God's Store House. Townes Funeral Home, 215 W. Main St., Danville, is serving the Gregory family.
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