At 25, Naval reservist Petty Officer Jerod Lewis had achieved much more in life than most his age.
Steeped in a military background he learned the discipline it takes to fulfill high expectations. He was prepared to meet those lofty goals.
But, nothing prepared him for the moment when someone else would put an end to his life of purpose.
MORE: Family searching for son's killer
If five months of tears could restore her son's life, then Joann Lewis' heavy heart would finally be free of sorrow. But, because the mystery surrounding Mr. Lewis' shooting death Aug. 3, 2012, remains unsolved. He was shot and killed while driving northbound down Perkins near I-240.
His still grieving family is hoping an increased award for information about his murder might do what tears haven't been able to do, produce a solid lead on finding his killer.
"You've all heard me say so many times before that someone out there knows everything," said Buddy Chapman, CrimeStoppers chairman. "Someone knows who killed Jerod Lewis."
At a Tuesday news conference Lewis' family said they are offering an additional $10,000 award to add to the $1,000 Memphis and Shelby County CrimeStoppers has already offered for information.
FOX13 News first talked with Mr. Lewis' parents, Darrell and Joann, three weeks after their son was found dead in his car at Perkins and I-240 on Aug, 3, 2012. At the time Memphis Police reported a passerby had seen Mr. Lewis' colorful gold car slowly rolling down the side of the road, windows down, and no one visible behind the wheel.
The passerby ran to the car, found the naval reservist had been shot and managed to put the car in park before calling police. Then, as apparently now, speculation about motive in Mr. Lewis' murder may center around the unique appearance of his vehicle.
"It could have been mistaken identity," Darrell Lewis said in August 2012. "I have heard there's another car like his out there. So, maybe that other person maybe got into it with somebody and thought that was him."
Perhaps, a case of mistaken identity, that violently cut short the life of a young man and father of a 10-month-old son, who confidently rode the road to success and was willing to instill that "can-do" spirit in others, whether family, friends or acquaintances.
"He served his country, so, his service to us very very well," Darrell Lewis said. "He also served his community as an HVAC technician, and as an EMT technician."
"He was actually mentoring his cousins that night, talking to them about education and getting a career." Joann Lewis recalled. "If he made you as a friend, you were his friend to the end."
It wasn't friend, but foe who cowardly left Petty Officer Lewis to die, and someone knows
Who it was.
If you have any information or saw anything that night Aug. 3, 2012, you are urged to call CrimeStoppers at 901-528-CASH. Your anonymous tip could lead to a cash reward.