By Mannix Porterfield
Cameron Lewis worked closely with Troop 7 on the West Virginia Turnpike during his tenure as a member of the road’s governing board.
That makes it fitting that the late member of the West Virginia Parkways Authority will be honored with a plaque at the new State Police detachment on the Charleston exit, members agreed Thursday. Troop 7 is the Turnpike’s detachment of the State Police.
Turnpike Manager Greg Barr said the bronze plaque will be installed at the recently completed headquarters building in his memory.
A dedication ceremony is being planned there, and the Lewis family will be invited to participate, Barr said.
“It’s very unfortunate he had to leave us,” Barr said of Lewis, who died March 18 after he was stricken with a sudden illness.
The 70-year-old Lewis had been a member of the authority since 2006.
During that time, Barr said, Lewis worked closely with Troop 7 “and was a strong supporter of what they do.”
One of his key goals was to see the construction of a new State Police building, replacing one that had been in use since the Turnpike was opened more than half a century ago.
“I thought it would be the appropriate thing to do, that we dedicate that facility to Cam’s memory,” Barr said.
Upon his appointment to the board by former Gov. Joe Manchin, he recalled bicycling as a youngster to the edge of the highway while it was under construction.
Besides working with the State Police detachment, now boasting 31 members, Lewis chaired the authority’s facilities committee, helping to oversee the capital improvements program.
Lewis also was instrumental in seeing that the toll road and its bridges were improved through the 10-year deferred maintenance project.
Doug Epling, a longtime friend and board member, applauded Barr’s call for the memorial plaque, saying, “I think that’s a terrific idea.”
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