Lawrence E. Lewis, 55, project manager for state

September 30, 2000|By Jacques Kelly | Jacques Kelly,SUN STAFF

Lawrence E. Lewis, an engineer who led the restoration of his profession's Mount Vernon Place clubhouse, died Sunday of brain cancer at Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care. He was 55 and lived in Lutherville.

A project manager and design team leader for the state's Department of General Services, he oversaw construction of the Sweeney District Court House in Annapolis, a Towson University dormitory and the Salisbury State Student Center. He also led the conversion of the former downtown Hutzler's department store into the Saratoga State Office Building.

"Both professionally and personally, he contributed greatly to engineering," said Peta N. Richkus, secretary of the state's Department of General Services.

Mr. Lewis, president of the Engineering Society of Baltimore in 1997, helped plan the exterior restoration of the society's West Mount Vernon Place clubhouse, a mid-19th-century building whose brownstone faM-gade was crumbling because of age and pollution.

Mr. Lewis had an affection for saving aging landmarks and oversaw the society's $350,000 restoration, where the front of the building was encased temporarily in plastic sheathing.

"He helped make this club what is today," said Randi Dutch, the Engineering Society's executive director. "He wanted it to be the best in Baltimore."

She said he also took an interest in promoting the education of young engineers and raised scholarship money for them.

He recently was recognized by the Maryland Historical Society for his role in installing a 16-ton marble column salvaged from the 1820 Baltimore Merchants Exchange. Mr. Lewis arranged for the column, designed by architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe, to go in the society's garden.

Born in Chicago, he received a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Notre Dame and a master's degree in industrial engineering from Purdue University.

Before he joined the state, he worked for Mullan Contracting Co. in Lutherville

He was a past president of the Mental Health Association of Baltimore and the Monterey Post of the Society of Military Engineers.

He also served on the Hampton Elementary School PTA and was a soccer coach for the Lutherville-Timonium Recreation Council.

In 1982, he was married to the former Candy Ciamillo, a Veterans Affairs nurse specialist, who survives him.

A Mass was offered Thursday at the Roman Catholic Church of the Nativity in Timonium, where he was a parish council member, religious education instructor and marriage preparation sponsor.

He also is survived by a son, Christopher Gayer Lewis of Lutherville; and two brothers, Minchin G. Lewis Jr. of Syracuse, N.Y., and Dennis C. Lewis of Fresno, Calif.

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