Nancy T. Lewis

Published 5:51 pm Tuesday, March 9, 2021

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GATESVILLE, NC – Nancy Wiley Todd Lewis, 95, died at her home in Gatesville, North Carolina on March 6, 2021.

She was born on September 21, 1925 in Richmond, Virginia to parents Georgie Wiley Todd and Julian Pratt Todd.

Nancy was a people-loving, fun-loving, animal-loving, and feisty daughter who kept up with her two amazing brothers, Julian Pratt Todd II (Jack) and Alfred (Howe) Todd. Wherever you found this clan there was always laughter, adventures, dancing, music, boundless love, and friends and family joining in the fun. Their love for life and family, and for Jesus affected everyone they met, leaving their legacy for their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren to emulate.

Nancy lived her life spreading boundless love for her family, for others, for nature, and for animals everywhere she went. Her joy spilled out from her heart through her beautiful smile, and lit up any room. We all hold dear the stories of her life, and the memories shared that will keep her alive in our hearts. Her rich life included riding her pony to school with her dog, which was added to the class roster; the adventures with her daring brothers; blowing the bugle at Camp Mont Shenandoah; her tenure as president of the student body at Westhampton College, followed by her bringing home two of her best friends to marry her brothers. She taught high school biology, chemistry, and physics at Ashland High School, and at Gatesville School, and also coached field hockey and basketball. She taught driver’s education in Gates County, which leads us to wonder how many of those students drove as speedily as she did!

A rainy day at Westhampton College brought a handsome sailor into her life, and she married Ashton Lewis, which began the adventure of their lives together. They moved to Gatesville, North Carolina, established the Ashton Lewis Lumber Company, raised four children, welcomed 12 grandchildren, made lifelong friends, and impacted their new community in many wonderful ways.

Square Dances, Supper Club, Bridge Clubs, 50 years in the Gatesville Woman’s Club, 70 years at the Gatesville Baptist Church were a large part of Nancy’s life. She led the Gatesville Girls Club, and served on the School Board, GEMS (Gates Emergency Ministries), and at Chowan College.

Nancy found great joy being with her friends and family as she traveled the world. She and husband Ashton created a family haven on the banks of the Albemarle Sound that has grown into a family compound 65 years later. Her smiles while boating, sailing, teaching us all to swim and water ski, playing ball games, volleyball, and gin rummy, relaxing on the pier, and digging into delicious Ruth Case meals will never be forgotten. She and Ashton, along with her parents and her brothers and their wives laid this foundation of family life and love that will be carried on through the generations. Her children, grandchildren, and nieces and nephews have inherited this love for adventure and family togetherness, and will carry them into the future!

Left to carry on the legacy of this wonderful mother of four children, “Memaw” of 12, great-grandmother of 11, are many nieces and nephews, along with her dear family, add-on family, and countless friends.

Her children are: Jackie Lewis Bundy (Claude), Nan Lewis Coxe (Tom), Georgia Lewis Taylor (Perk), and Ashton Todd Lewis (Taylor); grandchildren: Gimlet Hale Tibbits, Barton Lewis Bundy, MaryEllen Ragland Coxe Baur (Eric), Nancy Ashton Coxe Batten (Tyler), Margaret Wood Coxe Kemp (Sharp), Sarah Thomas Coxe, Kate Todd Taylor, Willis Perkins Taylor IV (Brooke), Sterling Lewis Taylor, Ashton Wright Lewis (Tricia), Camryn Elizabeth Lewis Questell (Michael), and Jordin Taylor Lewis Gresock (Joey); and great-grandchildren: Ashton and Charlie Baur, Wiley and Banks Batten, Phillip and Thomas Kemp, Harley and Finn Lewis, and Ashton Todd and Peter Joseph Gresock.

A memorial service, open to family and friends, will be held Friday, March 12 at 11:00 a.m. on the lawn at her home, and will be conducted by her former pastor, The Reverend Richard Wynn. A private burial will follow in the Gatesville Cemetery, where she will be laid to rest next to her husband.

Nancy worked tirelessly to serve others and to bring joy into this world. We will forever be influenced by the way she lived her life. She had special groups she loved to support that serve others in the same way.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in her memory may be made to her favorite groups: GEMS (Gates Emergency Ministries); Open WIDE Backpack Ministry; The Haven Missionary Care Center; and the Children’s Center in Suffolk, Virginia.

Miller Funeral Home, 304 Main Street, Gatesville, is assisting the family with arrangements and online condolences may be made by visiting