Friends, family and colleagues remember Orange Co. Deputy Norman Lewis

- Hundreds of law enforcement officers gathered Sunday to remember Deputy First Class Norman Lewis. He was killed in a crash on his way to a manhunt for suspect Markeith Loyd.

Coworkers, friends and family remembered Deputy First Class Norman Lewis as a gentle giant.

Corporal Salvatore Grimando said, "He was and is unforgettable. You couldn't help but recognize his voice on the radio."

Lt. Carl Santiago said, "Deputy Lewis had an amazing talent. He truly had the ability to write someone a ticket and make them a friend in a matter of minutes."

Sheriff Jerry Demings said he once got a letter from a driver who was ticketed by Deputy Lewis.

Sheriff Demings read it out loud, saying, "I am poor in my wallet than when we met. I am richer for the experience of someone that truly exemplifies a good cop."

That good cop got top honors today.

"I would posthumously present him with a purple heart award," Sheriff Demings said.

Deputy Lewis' parents say he had planned to celebrate his birthday with them this weekend, so they marked what would have been his 36th birthday, certain he was listening from up above.

Pastor David Uth, of First Baptist Church, said, "Norman is with Jesus today. He's having the time of his life."

From a smiling child to UCF football player to loving friend and relative, those who knew Deputy Lewis said he was a man who truly touched everyone he met.

His aunt Patsy Lewis said, "He became a great man, and I will miss him dearly."

His uncle Loyd Smiley said, "Norman was a gentle giant, anything you want he loved."

Even the toughest of men found it difficult to say goodbye.

Lt. Santiago said, "Norm, you are a hero in our hearts, and we know you will always be watching us. You turned in your motor wings for angel wings. We love you."

At Sunday's service, the UCF football team presented Deputy Lewis' parents with a football jersey in his honor.

The Mayor also proclaimed Sunday, Deputy Norman Lewis Day.

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