Funeral services for Mr. Payton will be noon Friday, Jan. 10 at Ligon & Bobo Funeral Home with Bro. Donald Owens, Bro. John Hunn and Coach Woody Hunt officiating. Interment will follow at Wilson County Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be Thursday 2-8 p.m. and Friday after 10 a.m. at Ligon & Bobo.
Lewis, 62, of Lebanon, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, at Alive Hospice at St. Thomas Hospital in Nashville.
Our brother Lewis “Big Lou” Payne Payton went home to see God. He was preceded in death by his father, William Lee Payton; his mother, Doris Pennington Payton; two brothers, William Lee and James Howard; his grandparents, Camillus and Allie Payton, and John and Florence Pennington. He is survived by two brothers, Billy and Michael and his sister, Johnie; two nieces, Bryanna and Alena; one nephew, Malik; one great-niece, Natalie.
Lewis was a very special baby, sick most of his childhood. The doctor said he would never walk or talk. What a surprise to Dr. Hill!
Once he started walking and talking, he never stopped. He was a man of the town. A friend to everyone he met – a comforter to those having problems. We have heard stories over the years of how he talked to students at Cumberland University (CU), giving them words of encouragement.
Lewis attended public school during his younger years. He was a student at House of Hope, a school for special needs students to attend until they were 21 years old. Mrs. Frances Austin was a special lady to him.
After graduation, he began the workforce at Prospect, selling papers for the Lebanon Democrat, and then CU, where he traveled with Woody Hunt and the baseball team, attended classes, did his homework, and made many, many friends. He walked the line at CU, receiving a special attendance certificate – what a day!
He will always be remembered by his sister Johnie, his brothers Billy and Michael, his nephew Malik, his nieces Bryanna and Alena, and his great-niece Natalie.
He had too many friends to mention them all, but several standout.
His friend Coach Woody Hunt, who said that Lewis was his best friend, stands out, and Birdie Bailey, who was like a mother to him. Rev. John Hunn and Rev. Donald Owens, Greg “Worm” Gibson, Donnie Anderson, Bobby Moore, CU classes (over the years), CU Baseball (and athletics), and the many friends of Lebanon-Wilson County that brought many smiles over the years and showed what he meant to our community.
We want to thank you all for your friendship for 62 years. The number of times you drove him home, the bags of chips you gave him, and the newspapers you purchased from him truly showed that he was blessed, we were blessed, and you were blessed.
There is no doubt that everyone loved Lewis.