Veteran PR specialist Richard Lewis dead at 62

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A memorial service was held June 8 in New York City for Richard S. Lewis, a longtime marine public relations specialist, who had operated his own agency for many years.

Lewis died May 17 at New York University Medical Center. He was 62.

Lewis was president and CEO of Richard Lewis Communications Inc. at 35 West 35th St. from 1972-78 and 1989-2008. His firm represents Tohatsu Outboards, Nissan Marine, SeaStrike Boats and SportCraft Boats.

A resident of Manhattan, Lewis had previously lived in Oyster Bay, N.Y., and Bayville, N.Y. He was a 1964 graduate of Oyster Bay High School and a 1968 graduate of Colby College in Waterville, Maine.

“While everyone in the industry will deeply miss Richard, his wish was that the business continue as his legacy and that his friends, family and colleagues enjoy life as much as he did,” said Greg Tiberend, president and CEO of Richard Lewis Communications.

Lewis was a long-time boating enthusiast and a passionate striped bass angler, fishing for the species in the East River and in Long Island Sound. He holds the Florida Keys record for most sailfish caught (and released) in one day.

Earlier in his career, Lewis had been executive vice president of the public relations firm Cove, Cooper, Lewis Inc. in New York, where he worked from 1978 to 1989. He was an adjunct associate professor at St. John’s University from 1972 to 1976.

Lewis is survived by his wife, Janet M. (Russo) Lewis; two brothers, Ralph C. Lewis of Northport, N.Y., and Sebsibe Mamo of North Amityville, N.Y; a brother-in-law, Thomas Russo of Tucson; and a nephew and niece in Tucson, Michael and Melissa.

The June 8 memorial service was held at Marble Collegiate Church. The family has asked that in lieu of flowers, donations in his memory be sent to Marble Church, 1 West 29th St., New York, N.Y. 10001, attention, D. Trombetta.

This article originally appeared in the July 2008 issue.

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