Obituary of Lanighta Lewis
Lanighta West Lewis, 85, passed away in her home in Goode Virginia after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.
Lanighta was born February 9, 1932 in Johnson, Vermont, daughter of the late Trefley and Emma West. She graduated from Johnson High School and went on to graduate from the Gifford Memorial School of Nursing in Randolph, Vermont.
She continued to work for Gifford Memorial Hospital after graduation and married Donald Lewis who in November 1955 moved to Pomfret, Vermont to his family farm where she had four children, Eric, Paula, Anita and Scott. Donald predeceased her June 18, 2017 after 61 years of marriage as well as her sister, Patricia Baker of Glens Falls, NY.
In 1963, the family moved to Florida and Lanighta worked first for Holiday Hospital in Orlando. She worked in various capacities becoming a supervisor and Director of Nursing before the hospital was sold. She happened to meet a man who started a concept of extended care facilities and he needed a Director of Nursing. The startup eventually became what we know today as Humana. She took the job and eventually the third floor became a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center. She became a certified drug and alcohol rehabilitation nurse to become nursing director of the facility. This was a new field for nursing care and she wrote several articles for nursing magazines and for teaching textbooks during her tenure at this facility.
Another door opened in her life and she took a change to rehabilitation nursing and began work with St. Paul Insurance Company. This required her to travel to check on their Workman’s Compensation claims patients to make sure they were getting the best care possible to return to work. The company noticed she had an eye for the facilities that were not up to par and she was sent to be certified as a Risk Manager and was moved to the Risk Management division of the company and sent with the team to certify hospitals and medical facilities for their malpractice coverages.
She retired from St. Paul Insurance and setup her own company, Caduceus Consulting, to provide Workman’s Compensation Nursing services to insurance companies in Florida, Tennessee and Vermont. She formed a staff of herself and several other nurses and ran the company until she finally retired and sold the company.
She and Donald then moved to Goode, VA to be near their daughter Paula since the mountains reminded them so much of Vermont where they spent their younger years. They bought a little farm and lived out the remainder of their days there.
Lanighta is survived by her brothers, Vernon (Skip) West (Ronnie) of Champlain, NY and Boyd (Bud) West (Carol) of Albany, NY; two sons Father Eric Lewis of Savannah, GA and Scott Lewis (Kimberly) of Omaha, NB: two daughters, Paula Hegner (Gary) of Augusta, GA and Anita Trout (Daniel) of Augusta, GA. She had seven grandchildren and a great granddaughter.
Memorial donations should be made to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (alzfdn.org)for research into a cure for this devastating and life taking disease.
A funeral mass will be held at St Thomas of Canterbury Anglican Catholic Church, 4910 Hubert Road, NW, Roanoke, VA on Friday, August 11, 2017 at 3 PM. The family will receive friend on Thursday, August 10, 2017 from 5-7 PM at Updike Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Bedford. Burial will be in Vermont the following week.
1140 W. Lynchburg-Salem Turnpike (Rt 221/460) Bedford, VA 24523, US
Phone: (540) 586-3304 Fax: (540)586-2084
11351 Leesville Road, Route 43 South Huddleston, VA, 24104, US
Phone: (540) 297-4966 Fax: 540-586-2084