Family of 60-year-old veteran shot and killed say his spirit kept him alive despite cancer

Posted at 8:35 PM, Nov 16, 2016

HAMPTON, Va. - Police investigators, crime scene tape and sirens flashing in the night. A shooting isn't anything new at the Colonial Landing Apartments in Hampton. But losing someone who brought so much light to the neighborhood has left many people confused.

Police found 60-year-old Army veteran Gregory Lewis shot to death inside the apartment building. Lewis was fighting a battle with cancer he knew he wasn't going to win. His nephew Shawn Lewis got the dreaded call from police Wednesday morning.

"The hardest part is how do you tell the family that something happened like that? That I wasn't prepared for," said Shawn, who has a question for whoever ended his uncle's life. "Why him? I mean, why? He was in a wheelchair, he wasn't even mobile. What did you have to gain from it? There can't be an answer they can give me."

The wheelchair didn't hold the Army veteran back. Neighbors say it was like a car for him.

"You can catch him anywhere up and down Kecoughtan road. His disabilities and things like that did not stop him from doing things he had to do. You'll catch him grocery shopping, anything. That was like his mini range rover," said Samantha Corbin, who lives at the Colonial Landing Apartments.

Corbin said every single day Lewis would say hello to her and give her a nice compliment. It's something she'll miss now that he's gone. "All I can do is look over that way and wait to hear it, but don't," said Corbin.

Lewis' family said he was battling terminal cancer, but his spirit kept him alive.

"The doctor gave him six months to live. He's been living about eight years. He'll go to chemo and come back home like he went to the store. You couldn't even tell. Chemo couldn't get him down, nothing could get him down," said Shawn Lewis.

When asked about his favorite memory of his uncle, Shawn said it was very recent.

"Two days ago, I just seen him. I just seen him. We sat and talked about an hour. Something was telling me to go over there and visit him," said Shawn.

Hampton Police is still investigating. There is no suspect information at this time.