Lewis Lechtenberg

Tuesday, July 2, 2024 6:46 pm

Lewis Alan Lechtenberg, age 7 ½, of Calmar, Iowa passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Saturday, June 29, 2024, at his home after a 6-year battle with brain cancer.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Monday, July 8, 2024, at Decorah Lutheran Church, 309 Winnebago Street, Decorah, with Rev. Peter Kowitz presiding. Following the service there will be a reception and celebration of Lewis’ life at Pinters Event Center, at 2475 IA-9, west of Decorah.

A visitation will be held from 1 to 6 p.m.., Sunday, July 7, at Decorah Lutheran Church, 309 Winnebago Street, Decorah. There will be no visitation prior to the service on Monday morning.  Attendees are asked to please come in and be seated.

The family requests flowers not be sent.  In lieu of flowers and gifts: Memorials may go to the family.  A charitable foundation will be set up in memory of Lewis.

Lewis was born Dec. 19, 2016, in Decorah, Iowa to Justin and Karla (McClintock) Lechtenberg. Lewis was baptized at Decorah Lutheran Church on Nov. 12, 2017. Lewis was a student at St. Teresa of Calcutta School for preschool and kindergarten. This past year Lewis attended South Winneshiek Elementary having completed first grade. In July of 2018, Lewis was diagnosed with a rare, cancerous brain tumor at the age of 18 months. Since that time, he had several recurrences and a total of 4 brain surgeries to remove the tumors at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, with the most recent surgery in September of 2023. Throughout his cancer journey, Lewis had undergone proton beam radiation treatments of the brain and spine and had multiple chemotherapy medications. Lewis also had frequent routine doctor appointments and MRI imaging.  He never once complained, and he faced every challenge with an unbelievable amount of bravery.

Lewis was an exceptionally special boy who rought life and love to a room as soon as he entered. Lewis had endless energy and had an adventurous, happy personality. He was quick to make new friends and always had a smile on his face.  He had a passion for lime green Lamborghinis, LEGOS, reading books, Minecraft, riding his bike, going to church, telling jokes, attending Luther College Baseball games and practices and Luke Bryan concerts. Lewis was often wearing his cowboy boots or Luther College Baseball jersey everywhere he went.

In April of 2019 Lewis began a life-changing relationship with the Luther College Baseball Team. Each year they hosted a Versus Cancer game raising money to donate for cancer research. In the spring of 2019, Lewis was asked to come throw the first pitch for that game. After that interaction, Lewis became more involved with Luther Baseball. Each year his impact grew on his Norse teammates and soon he was going to practices, riding on the drag mower, running bases, sitting in the dugout or scoreboard and sometimes on his teammate’s girlfriend’s and sister’s laps during games, and this year he traveled to an away game on the Norse bus with the team. He would join in the huddles and assist with the team breakdown after games and practices. Lewis had the opportunity to be a part of the Norse game at the Field of Dreams in the fall of 2022.The relationships and bonds that developed with players and their families are immeasurable and his family is forever grateful for that.

Lewis had a way of bringing out the good in everyone he met. He made the world a better place by spreading love, joy and happiness to people, especially those that needed it the most. Lewis had the biggest hugs and made sure to give one to anyone. This year for his 7th birthday his class at school surprised him by all wearing team Lewis’s t-shirts and that is when he received his. He felt the support when seeing his apparel or Team Lewis bracelets being worn all throughout the community and schools. He knew he was truly loved by all who knew him. Lewis also had a card shower for his 7th birthday, receiving over 1,100 cards full of jokes, well wishes, stickers, and ice cream money.

With Lewis’ most recent diagnosis, over the past 10 months his family made so many memories and adventures. Lewis attended two Luke Bryan concerts, rode in a lime green Lamborghini in Las Vegas, served as “Kid Captain” for the Iowa State Wrestling Team, attended Monster Jam, and traveled to the Cayman Islands. He loved driving his Polaris Razor and riding his new bike. In May, Lewis had the honor to throw the first pitch for the South Winneshiek Baseball Team at the Minnesota Twins Stadium. This past month, Lewis played baseball and participated in the Calmar Area Swim Team and was passionately cheered on by his peers and community members.

Lewis and his family have felt the support of their community and friends over the past 6 years and especially in the past 10 months which was so inspiring for Lewis to keep fighting and live his motto in life. If you asked him his motto, he would say: “Be Brave, Be Strong, Be Happy” and sometimes he adds “Eat Steak.”

Lewis is survived by his parents Justin and Karla Lechtenberg of Calmar; his sisters Brinley and Eloise and brother William; his grandparents Alan Lechtenberg of Calmar, LeRoy and Deanna McClintock of Decorah, and Kathryn Lechtenberg and Great Grandmother Kay Strand of Decorah; Uncle Randy McClintock and family and Aunt Beth Sims and family of Decorah; as well as many other extended family and close friends.

Lewis was preceded in death by his grandmother, Virlis (Sacquitne) McClintock whom he has known as “Grandma in Heaven”.

Please feel free to wear your Lewis apparel to any of the services if you wish.

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