Former Pennsylvania State Sen. H. Craig Lewis
The United States tourist, who died while swimming in Anegada on Sunday January 13, has been identified as Former Pennsylvania State Sen. H. Craig Lewis, 68, who represented Bucks County and parts of Philadelphia for 20 years.
The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that Sen. Lewis, who served five terms, lived in Center City.
The Inquirer reported that Sen. Lewis was on vacation and on a day sail at Loblolly Bay when his wife, Dianne Semingson, noticed he was facedown and motionless in the water.
According to the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, the wife then sought assistance from others on the beach to get him to shore where attempts were made to resuscitate him. According to Police, he was then taken to the Anegada Clinic where efforts continued to revive him. He was later taken to Tortola where he was officially pronounced dead.
The Coroner was informed and a post-mortem is to be scheduled.
The Inquirer reported that Semingson said that Sen. Lewis was a strong swimmer and that officials "were pretty sure this is not a drowning."
Sen. Lewis' death "was a real tragedy, because he had so much more to give in so many different ways," said former Gov. Ed Rendell.
"He was smart, honest, resourceful. He served in the Senate with integrity and with real concern about what was best for the people not just in his district, but in Pennsylvania," Rendell said.
According to the Inquirer, Sen. Lewis was born in Hazleton, Pa., on July 22, 1944. He graduated from Millersville State College with a bachelor's degree in history. He attended the University of Nebraska graduate school and was a graduate of Temple University School of Law.
The Inquirer also reported that Sen. Lewis practiced law and served as a member of the Bar of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Council, and the state Advisory Committee for Guidance Service.
He was elected to the Senate from the Sixth District, serving from 1974 to 1994.
Sen. Lewis, a Democrat, was chair of the Judiciary, Local Government, and Ethics Committees. He served on numerous state commissions.
After leaving the Senate, Sen. Lewis served as a vice president for corporate affairs at Norfolk Southern Corp. Before joining Norfolk Southern, he was a partner in the Dechert, Price & Rhodes law firm.
In 1998, he was named chair of the Philadelphia Foundation, which at that time awarded the Philadelphia Liberty Medal.
He also was on the board of Aria Health, which operates three hospitals in the Philadelphia region, and the Philadelphia Zoo.
According to the Inquirer, his wife, city representative under Mayor W. Wilson Goode, described Sen. Lewis as "a wonderful husband, father, and community leader."
"He was so supportive of me personally, all his friends, and the organizations with which he was associated. He is known as someone of honesty and integrity," she told the Inquirer.
Sen. Lewis "had a tremendous ability to take complicated information and rearticulate it to make it clear to all. He had so much to live for," she said.