Deep in the heart of Tex

A very involved community member is this year’s

grand marshal of the Whaling Days Grand Parade.

Silverdale Dandy Lions board members recently announced that Tex Lewis, co-founder of the Clear Creek Trail Task Force, received this year’s great honor.

“I think it is a nice recognition,” Lewis said. “I don’t take it as a personal recognition, but a recognition of the task force as a whole and what they’ve done for the community. The people have done it themselves, it’s a community effort, I just had to be the guy who sits in the (parade) car.”

Lewis is not only involved with the trail, but also with Old Mill Park, Central Kitsap Community Council and is currently participating in the Anderson Landing project. He has worked with several volunteer groups to transform the Clear Creek Trail and Clear Creek/Sa’qad Interpretive Center into what it is today.

“I’m always amazed and humbled by what a community can do when they put aside their differences and work together,” Lewis said. “We want to continue to expand the trail system.”

Efforts have been made by the Clear Creek Task Force to restore the Clear Creek stream and surrounding riparian area, educate the public and increase individuals’ awareness of the stream and their impact on it.

“Tex Lewis has chosen, in military retirement, to offer his amazing leadership abilities to our Silverdale community,” said Kent Larabee, one of the people who nominated Lewis. “Where others talk, Tex acts; where others criticize, Tex inspires; where others seek approbation for themselves, Tex freely gives it to others, particularly our younger citizens,” he said.

Task Force in 1992 when Lewis sensed a lack of parks and amenities. Over the years the Clear Creek Trail has been used by a variety of community members. Every year on Earth Day, approximately 100 students from Central Kitsap High School join together to work on the trail. About 30 youths have done their Eagle Scout projects on the trail.

“We like to get the kids involved, they have a lot of stake (in the trail), there are some really good kids out there,” Lewis said. “‘What can I do to help?’ is the response we get from a lot of them.”

Lewis retired, or as he says “graduated” from the Navy as an engineer in 1988 after 30 years of service. He moved to Kitsap County soon after he “graduated.” Lewis has been married for 43 years to wife Lynda, and has two grown children and three grandchildren.

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