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HILL’S SPILLS – A Tribute to Kevin Lewis

Sportswriters are like family in a sense. When something happens to one of our own, we all mourn and grieve.
Last Friday night after I got back from the Holston football game, I had several calls and messages on my machine and I knew something was wrong. Something had happened to one of our brothers.
On Thursday, Erwin Record Sports Editor Kevin Lewis passed away at age 52 of a heart attack.
Many people in Johnson County knew Kevin and I had a great friendship with him.
Like myself, Kevin was not originally from the community he represented. Kevin was from Staten Island, N.Y., which is part of New York City.
Kevin worked at the Staten Island Register before moving to Greene County in the mid-2000s.
Kevin worked briefly at the Elizabethton Star before finding his niche at the Erwin Record and he took their section to heights never seen before.
The Record became a complete overview of Unicoi County Sports, similar to what this paper has been over the last seven and a half years.
However, I feel Kevin has gone above and beyond what I’ve done here and was by far the hardest working sports writer in the area.
I was talking to one of our coaches at JCHS today and he commented how Kevin was one of the few out of town sportswriters who gave Johnson County a fair shake.
He didn’t have to, but that was the kind of guy he was.
Kevin loved Unicoi County sports and he cared about the kids.
Of course, Kevin did have people who gave him a hard time and gave him the common complaints of their kid not being in the paper.
No sportswriter is perfect and not everything is going to mentioned. Kevin tried his best to be fair to every kid.
I know there was one coach at UCHS that Kevin had a special relationship with. Charlie Baxter, who has won several state championships, was a huge fan of Kevin and his love for baseball.
Kevin was a huge fan of the New York Yankees and New York Giants.
Kevin had a different personality from a lot of people here, but he became one of us. He opened up his heart to the South and though he would tell you he was still a Yankee, he fit in well and was one of the kindest people I knew.
I was a frequent reader of the Record’s OT and I looked forward to reading his work.
My thoughts and prayers go out to Erwin Record Publisher Mark Stevens and his staff at the Record, but also to the people of Unicoi County.
Sports will go on in Erwin and the Blue Devils have some awesome programs, but they have lost their biggest supporter.
Let this also be a lesson to us that we need to take advantage of every day we have here on Earth.
Kevin told me the other day that he was looking forward to being around for the Erwin Record’s 100th anniversary in 18 years.
We’re never guaranteed tomorrow.
In closing, I would like to say that this fraternity has lost one of it’s greatest members and friends. We have lost a brother of the likes we will never see again.