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Florence Lewis

Florence Mack Lewis passed away February 15, 2015 at the age of 92 after a long struggle with vascular dementia. She was born Florence Makowiecki in 1923 to Polish immigrants Leon and Kazmira. She was the fifth of seven children. She lived a long and interesting life beginning in Reading, Pa., and ending in Portland, Ore. She was social and flirtatious, generous to a fault, and dedicated to her familyparticularly her grandchildren. She joined the Navy Waves at 18, earning the rank of Petty Officer First Class. She worked as a secretary for Charles Maylon, the Legislative Assistant to the President during the Truman Administration, and as a clerk-stenographer in the Executive Office of the White House. One of her more distinct memories was being turned away by a guard when she tried to sneak a peek at the presidential bowling alley. Maylon wrote of her, I consider her in the top bracket of secretaries I have had in the last thirty years. She also worked as a part time dance instructor at the Arthur Miller Dance Studio in Washington DC where she met her husband to be and fellow dance instructor, Lt. Col. William E. Lewis (Army). Later she worked for the Postal Service, Forest Service, and a variety of private firms, finishing her career at the CPA office of Daniel Kostmatka.

When her husband was called back to active duty during the Korean Conflict, the family left the east coast for Oregon and family in the Portland area. Pendleton and Salem followed, and in 1969 they moved to Central Point. After her husband's death in 1985, Florence met Kenny McDonell, her travel companion, dance partner, and best friend until his death in 2005.

While in the Rogue Valley she attended Our Shepherd of The Valley Catholic Church, and was a member of the Southern Oregon Society of Artists and the Watercolor Society of Oregon. Her painting of the Hotel Medford was the subject of the Medford Centennial print. She was an avid dancer and delighted in events at the Evergreen Ballroom and the Medford Jazz Jubilee.

Florence is survived by three daughters, Ann Deblasio, Kelly Todd, and Karen Lewis; two sons, Bill and Mack; nine grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, three sisters, three brothers, and her grandson, John Michael Fisher.

No services are planned. In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution to the Cure Alzheimer's Fund (curealz.org).


Florence Lewis