Perry Lewis

Perry Lewis passed away peacefully at his home on August 26th, 2021. He was surrounded by his loving family.


Perry was born on June 26th, 1942, in Philadelphia, PA to Francis A. and Lalite Lewis. Perry spent his childhood in Wayne, PA and summers in Pretty Marsh, ME. He is graduate of St. George's and the University of Pennsylvania.


Perry was an accomplished sailor and longtime active member of Ida Lewis Yacht club, serving on race committee for many years. He was also a founding officer of American Sailing Training Association (now Tall Ships America) and of OHPRI, builders of sail training ship Oliver Hazard Perry, the first ocean going tall ship to be built in the U.S. in over a century and Rhode Island's official tall ship. Being on the water brought Perry great joy and he wanted to bring that joy to others through his fundraising and volunteer work.


Among the many adventures in his life, most memorable was sailing to the Bahamas to marry Elizabeth. Other highlights include helping to run Tall Ships events in Newport, Philadelphia, Rochester, Toronto, Venezuela, and Portugal. As a lifelong sailor, voyages included trans-Atlantic, the length of the South Atlantic, as well as a failed voyage that ended in a sinking in mid-Atlantic and a rescue by a Philippine freighter.


He is survived by his wife of 32 years Elizabeth W. Kerr. In addition, he is survived by his daughters Marion Kerr and her husband Peter of Collegeville, PA, Tyler Lewis of Cranston, RI, and Story Lewis Savage and her husband Rich of Cumberland, RI. He is also survived by his grandchildren; James Zerillo, Samuel Gintz, Declan Gintz, Caden Gintz, Benjamin Grenier, Charlie Grenier, Orrin and Malcom Savage and honorary grandson, Roan Iribarren.


Services will be private. In remembrance of Perry, donations may be made to the Oliver Hazard Perry Rhode Island, 11A Bridge Street, Newport, RI 02840.