Sophie C. LewisSeptember 22, 1930 ~ December 25, 2017 (age 87)
A Life Remembered
Sophie Candice Smith Lewis, of Merced, California passed away peacefully on Monday, December 25, 2017 she was 87. Born, September 22, 1930, in Detroit, Michigan, she was the youngest of seven children born to Aberdean and Lucille Boone Smith. New Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist was her church home while growing up. She was raised on the East side of Detroit where she was educated in the Detroit Public Schools System. She graduated from Sidney D. Miller High School and after graduation, attended Goldberg School of Nursing where she received a Nursing Certificate and became a Licensed Practical Nurse.
Sophie met and married Royan Lewis in 1946, who preceded her in death. To this union, four children were born; Michael Eugene Lewis, Richard Royan Lewis, Lynda Dyanne Lewis, and Phyllis J. Lohar-Singh.
In the early 1950’s Sophie and Royan relocated their family from Detroit to Chicago. In 1963 the family moved to Delhi, California. After Sophie and Royan divorced, she attended Merced College where she received her Vocational Nurses License. Later Sophie and her children built a home and settled in Livingston, California. After raising her children, Sophie moved to Merced and worked as an LVN and caregiver until she retired.
Sophie was a social activist. She started the first Neighbor Center in Livingston and helped bring Caesar Chavez to the Valley in the late 1960’s. Sophie the entrepreneur, started Sophie’s Redevelopment Company where she developed residential properties. She was an outgoing person never turning a blind eye to those in need. Sophie was a fun loving and creative person who brought life into every event. Sophie was truly a trailblazer.
In addition to her children she leaves to cherish her memories: Daughter-in-law, Zelma Lewis, 7 grandchildren: Sjon C.L. Blackwell, Damien Z. Lewis, Jason M. Lewis, Janae Thomas, Taj Lohar Singh, Diva Wright, Amhed A. Johnson and 12 great grandchildren: her older sister, Lois Lee, of Detroit, Michigan, and a host of other loving relatives and friends. Her sisters, Virdell Smith, and Ludean Smith Corley preceded her in death.