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February 13, 2014

Clifford Sidney Hewitt Jr.

MORROW —

Clifford Sidney Hewitt Jr. was born Sept. 23, 1941 at Emory in Atlanta. The oldest child and only son of Millie Janet Wardlaw and Clifford S. Hewitt Sr., his childhood was spent in Pensacola, Fla.; Lost Mountain and Springvale. Later his family lived in Thomasville and Cliff finished high school in Jennings, Fla. He grew up helping farm and raise cattle. 
While attending Berry College in Rome, Cliff was active in student government and civil rights activities. He performed in numerous plays, sang with the Berry Choir, and did Messiah solos each year. There he met Sarah Doris Woodruff from Sycamore. They dated throughout college and married August 11, 1963. After graduation they moved to Tallahassee, Fla. where Cliff obtained a master's degree in administration. Over the years Cliff worked did personnel work for the Florida Merit System, St. Andrews College in North Carolina and the Georgia Department of Transportation. Meanwhile, he served as Director of Music and Education at several churches. 
In 1977 Cliff left government work to establish and serve as director of Cross Keys Counseling Center in Forest Park. His goal was to integrate Christian counseling services with related services. He was able to accomplish this in part, and at one time Cross Keys had five locations scattered over the Metro Atlanta area. In 2001 Cliff was instrumental in developing the Worthy Counseling Clinic of Morrow, which provides mental health services to the indigent and uninsured, working closely with Good Shepherd Medical Clinic. With the assistance of Cross Keys Ministries, a nonprofit group, Cross Keys has served thousands and has helped train about 60 counselors and psychologists. As Cliff’s health forced him to give up his involvement at Cross Keys, Sarah took over his responsibilities. 
Cliff enjoyed reading, telling stories, meeting people and cheering them with his sense of humor. His greatest achievement in life had nothing to do with the jobs he held or the positions he filled in churches, but rather the personal, one-on-one relationships he initiated and maintained with people he encountered in daily life. His goal was to help others through his care, concern, humor or song. He loved and related to people whom many shunned or feared. He believed that by sharing Christ’s love in small but consistent ways, his “living would not be in vain”. 

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