Jessie James Jr. (“Jerry”, “CoCo”, “Pops”, “Daddy”) Lewis Jr., transitioned peacefully into the arms of the Lord Saturday, March 30, 2019. Jerry demonstrated unwavering courage and determination while battling blindness, diabetes induced kidney failure and other medical complications. In spite of his medical situation, Jessie’s faith in God never wavered nor waned.
Jessie, 79, was born February 10, 1940, in Grapeland, Texas, to Jessie James Sr. and Eudia Bell Lewis. He graduated from WR Banks School and immediately went into the workforce. Jerry was hardworking and determined to make his own way in life. He worked in the flooring industry prior to January 1974 when he hired on at Vulcraft/Nucor in the painting department, from where he retired in 1989. Jerry was brought up in “The Church of the Living God” (Prophet Herman and John L. McKnight) and was a current member of Evangelistic Pentecostal Church of Crockett under the leadership of Pastor Walter R. Kent.
While attending WR Banks, Jessie began sending handwritten letters to Gloretha Tillis via his sister Louise professing his admiration. The couple passed these letters for years before going on their first date. On September 19, 1975, they wrote a love letter to the world that lasted 44 years. Four children, in good times and bad, through sickness and health, “Jerry and Glo” remained together until death did them part. Jerry was a peaceful and gentle man that always found a way to make you feel that he was agreeing with you even when he wasn’t. He loved quietness and being with his family. Attending church, fishing, swimming, and eating were his favorite activities. Pop’s especially loved Thanksgiving so that he could enjoy the potato salad, chicken and dressing, and buttermilk pie lovingly made for him but shared with many. He spent his entire life in Grapeland and seldom did he miss a Peanut Festival parade. As a father, he was a man of few words, but he always showed his love and support for his children in his own laid back manner.
Jessie was proceeded in death by his mother and father Jessie Sr., Eudia Bell Lewis, and sister Linda Jean Lewis and mother-in-law Velma Tillis.
Left to celebrate Jerry’s memory is his wife Gloretha; four children: Calvin Tillis of Grapeland; Trenia (Rogerick) Hoard of Tyler; Horace (Tonya) McCorvey of Dallas; and Tracie Tilllis of Grapeland; his siblings: George (Mattie) Lewis; John (Josie) Lewis of Dallas; Georgia Mae Lewis (Percy) of Texas City; and Ester “Louise” Lewis of Grapeland; siblings by marriage: LJ Tillis; Mae Joyce Williams; Walter (Debra) Tillis; James (Patricia) Tillis; and Willie D (Christine) Tillis; and Jessie Lee Tillis. Seven grandchildren: LeeKariah, Kimberly and Shareal Tillis, Senoj Jones, Horace, Monica, and Aaron McCorvey; and a host of nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.
Visitation: Walker & Walker Friday, April 5, 2019 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM The Family will be receiving guest 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Service: Rising Star Baptist Church Saturday, April 6, 2019 11:00 AM
Interment: Golden Gate Cemetery