Local News

Hit-and-run victim remembered as kind, social

Posted March 14, 2009 8:50 p.m. EDT
Updated March 15, 2009 8:08 a.m. EDT

— People who knew Lewis Avery Gray, who died in a hit-and-run Wednesday, described him as a very social man and a class act.

“If you didn’t like Lew, then you don’t like anybody,” Gray's friend Ron Stonestreet said.

Raleigh Police said that four vehicles hit Gray while he was trying to cross Falls of Neuse Road, near the North Ridge Pub. Two men have been charged.

Many of Gray’s friends referred to him as “Lew.” He frequented the North Ridge Pub, where people said he was well-liked.

“Everyone that came in here knew him. Everyone liked him. He spoke with everybody,” bartender Brian Loo said.

Loo said the Oklahoma native was a regular at the pub for the company, not the drinks.

“People, as soon as they saw Lew, they’d come sit by him and start talking to him and see what’s going on with his life,” Loo said.

Gray had been retired for six years. Prior to that he worked as the executive director of Smith Anderson Law in Raleigh for 16 years.

"When you have somebody who was so well-liked and so admired by his peers and others – that's really doubly tragic," said Rob Harris, who succeeded Gray at Smith Anderson Law.

Gray is survived by his daughter and son, a brother and four grandchildren.

Visitation will be held Sunday from 2 to 3 p.m. at Brown-Wynne Funeral Home, 1701 E. Millbrook Road in Raleigh. Following the service, the North Ridge Pub will hosting a party to honor Gray.

Police charged Carlos David Rodriguez-Bautista, 34, with felony hit-and-run and Carlos Humberto Agustindiaz with misdemeanor hit-and-run in Gray's death. Investigators say that Rodriguez-Bautista was driving the first vehicle to strike Gray.

The drivers of the two other vehicles that hit Gray stayed at the scene and will not be charged, police said.