Roast/Tribute Honoring Rev. G. Stanley Lewis
More than 200 individuals recently attended a Roast/Tribute Program honoring Reverend G. Stanley Lewis. The black-tie banquet sponsored by graduates of Theta Delta chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity attracted current and former members of the fraternity from near and far, most of whom were outstanding students at Northwestern State University beginning in the early 1970′s. For more than 25 years Reverend Lewis served as Advisor to the fraternity that was the first African American Greek letter organization on the NSU campus. Recognized then for their outstanding scholastic and athletic achievements and contributions to NSU, many Theta Delta/NSU graduates have found lifetime success in a variety of careers including business, education, finance, law and law enforcement, medicine, music, nursing, professional athletics, the Armed forces, and Christian ministry.
Serving as Master of Ceremony for the occasion was Southwest Airlines Senior Project Director Odell Brown of Dallas, TX. Guests were welcomed by Attorney Dale Sibley, Chief Administrative Officer for the city of Shreveport and the Invocation was given by US Army CW3 Windell Bonner of Fort Polk, LA. The occasion was presented by Henri Wesley, Assistant Recreation Director for the city of Shreveport who paraphrased a favorite saying of Rev. Bro. Lewis, “The Three C’s.”
A member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity since 1953, Lewis was recognized not only for his service at the local level, but also at the District, State and National levels, where he has made valuable contributions, as evidenced by the tributes offered by Omega brothers including former 31st Grand Basileus Burnel Coulon from Indianapolis, IN; 9th District Representative, Shawn Brewer from Dallas, TX, and 13th District Representative Col. Torrance Chism who represents all international chapters.
Other tributes were offered by Rudolph White of Shreveport, James Frazier of Baton Rouge, and LaVelle Dickens, Commander, U.S. Public Health Service of Denton, TX. A beautiful musical tribute in the form of a xylophone performance was Anthony Robinson, Percussion Instructor and Symphony orchestra member in north Louisiana and Texas. A certificate from the city of Natchitoches was presented by Councilwoman Sylvia Morrow prior to the Benediction by Bryan Roberson, currently a student at Northwestern State University. Vocal selections were presented by Ms. Nancy Drawhorn and Ms. Marselette Roberson, both of Natchitoches.
A special highlight among the roasts and tributes, were revealing expressions made by longtime friend and City Councilman Milton Crosby of Gretna, LA, who was a high school football foe, a college classmate and a “line brother” to the honoree. Crosby is the father of Reverend Lewis’ daughter-in-law, Rene’ C. Lewis.
Tributes and words of gratitude were paid to Reverend Lewis and his wife, Edwina Lewis (first advisor to Iota Mu Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority), by former Iota Mu members, a number of whom were present for the occasion. Like Theta Delta, Iota Mu was the first campus sorority for African American female students. During their concurrent years of service to NSU, the Lewis household served as a home-away- from-home for Omegas and Deltas as well as many non-Greek students.
This tradition is currently observed by a number of second-generation NSU students.
Among the large group of friends and acquaintances were many local individuals including representatives from NSU, the Louisiana School, clergy and Church members, governmental officials, and colleagues. Several out-of-town family members, college classmates and friends were also present.
In his remarks, Lewis expressed his appreciation for the beautiful banquet and for the many kind words and expressions shown during the event. The program gave him the opportunity to meet and greet many individuals who hold special memories for him. In addition, he recognized members of his family who joined him for the occasion.
Special words of gratitude were paid to Omega brothers Erwin Wilson, Martin Fontenot, LaVelle Dickens, Odell Brown, and Delta Rene’ C. Lewis, along with all of the individuals who helped to plan this very special evening of remembrance.