Lewis Lynwood Paynter (Barnwell)
Lewis Lynwood Paynter was born on December 28, 1936, in Woodbury, New Jersey to the late Octavious E. Sr. and the late Evelyn B. Paynter. He transitioned peacefully on September 8, 2017, at Pruitt Health in Aiken.
Lewis nickname among his military friends was “Peso” (but he was affectionately known as “Sweetie”) and he was educated in the public school system in Woodbury, New Jersey. After high school, Lewis was briefly employed at a cigar factory.
In 1954, Lewis enlisted in the United States Air Force, which broadened his passion for domestic and international travel. During his distinguished military career of 27 years, he was a Medical Service Assistant, Aero Medical Airlift Technician, and he ended his military career as a Medical Service Technician. His stations spanned from the West Coast to the East Coast and all points in between, which included several missions to Southeast Asia. Lewis received numerous awards of distinction: Air Force Commendation Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Air Medal for Meritorious Achievement, First, Second and Third Clusters, and he retired with exemplary military service as a Master Sergeant. He was a Lifetime Member of the Aero Medical Evacuation Association and often attended their annual reunions.
Upon retirement, Lewis and his family settled in Barnwell. He began a second career at the United States Postal Office (Letter Carrier) for 18 years. He had an extraordinary work ethic; he was awarded several pins for accumulating sick leave in excess of
1,000 hours. The motto “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds” was one of many examples of his phenomenal work ethic.
As a young child, Lewis accepted Christ, and was affiliated with Campbell AME Church in Woodbury, New Jersey and St. John Baptist Church in Barnwell where he served on the Trustee Board.
Lewis enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren. He had a passion for hosting and attending family reunions. There was never a time when he didn’t have a camera to take unexpected pictures of family and friends. Lewis was a lover of Westerns and “Sanford and Son” marathons. Please don’t even think about interrupting him during these times. He developed a passion for gardening, and was once bitten by a rattlesnake. The holidays were “prime time” for him, especially Christmas. He would pull out the reel-to-reel and cassettes, and the sounds of James Brown, The Temptations and Otis
Redding’s “Merry Christmas Baby,” would be heard throughout the house. He could be classified as a professional gift wrapper; he could have easily gotten a job at Macy’s.
Lewis is preceded in death by three brothers, Octavious, James and Andrew Paynter, and one sister, Mabel Moody.
Lewis and his wife, Dorothy, enjoyed more than 50 years of marriage (hence the dual nicknames, “Sweetie”). He was blessed with seven children: Lewis L. Paynter Jr. (Bonnie) of Williamstown, N.J., Michael Paynter of Blackwood, N.J., Robin Paynter of Camden, N.J.), Gwendolyn Thomas (Alvin) of Barnwell, Lynnette Douglas of Jacksonville, Fla., Charlotte Paynter of Cairo, Ga., and La Sheril Paynter of Stone Mountain, Ga. Also cherishing his memory: three sisters, Bertha Richardson of Philadelphia, Pa., Martha Lewis of Rancocas Woods, N.J., and Sylvia
Maxwell of Hartley, Del.; two brothers, Lawrence Paynter (Ruthie) of Woodbury, N.J. and Alfred Paynter of Middletown, Del.; one brother-in-law, Nehemiah Cave of Jacksonville, Fla.; 12 grandchildren, 24 great-grandchildren, two great-great-grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews and friends.
A Celebration of Life Service was held on Saturday, September 16, 2017 at 11 a.m. at Dyches Funeral Home in Barnwell. Interment followed at Hope Memorial Gardens in Barnwell.
B.F. Cave Funeral Home in Allendale assisted the family with arrangements.