Fallen deputy’s mother keeps his memory alive giving back to families in need

Norman Lewis killed in 2017 in the line of duty

ORLANDO, Fla. – According to the nonprofit Feeding America, one in six children face hunger in Florida--going to school without a proper breakfast or going to bed without a meal, a reality fallen Deputy First Class Norman Cecil Lewis was well aware of.

“Norm did it and he did it from his heart and it was just what he did,” the late deputy’s mother, Norma Lewis told News 6 about her youngest son.

She described him as a teddy bear with a great heart.

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“Norm would buy things, bring (them) home and he had a set date to deliver stuff,” she said. “We were brought up that way and that’s what we taught Norm. He was 4 years old when he was helping at the homeless shelter, and he was on a milk crate because we always cooked our meals and brought it to the homeless shelter.”

Norma Lewis wants the 35-year-old to be remembered for his solidarity and helping Central Florida’s less fortunate. On January 9, 2017, her hero Norman Lewis died in the line of duty.

“I think about Norm every day because he was my muscle. He could carry those cases where I couldn’t, you know, and he loved the seniors, we would go and visit the seniors,” his mother recalled. “If he was in the grocery store and someone was short rather than they put all the stuff back, Norm would just pay for the whole bill.”

Lewis was responding to an emergency call in south-central Orange County when he was hit and killed by another vehicle. Lewis was on his way to assist after deputies say Orlando police Lt. Debra Clayton was shot and killed by suspected killer, Markeith Loyd.

“It has been a hard journey, but God don’t give you no more than you can bear,” she said.

Orange County sheriff's Deputy Norman Lewis.

During his lifetime, her son also looked out for children whose parents have a hard time making ends meet.

“He would say, ‘These children didn’t ask to come here so, it is our duty wherever they’re lacking, to make a difference,’” she said.

It’s those words she goes by each August and January when she collects items to fill food pantries across public schools.

“It takes a village to raise a child and a family. I tell people, ‘you don’t have to do a whole lot but do something.’ When you see people in need help ‘em,” she said. “If I eat and I know somebody’s not eating-- I gotta make sure they have something.”

About the Author:

Carolina Cardona highlights all Central Florida has to offer in her stories on News 6 at Nine. She joined News 6 in June 2018 from the Telemundo station in Philadelphia.