Richard A. Weaver-Bey, 63, departed this life suddenly on Saturday May 17, 2008, as the result of heart failure while bike-riding near his home in Simsbury.
Born in Hartford on September 7, 1944 to the late Mamie (Pittman) and John (Sr.) Weaver-Bey, he attended Bloomfield Public Schools, and was a graduate of Bloomfield High School.
The youngest brother in a family of eight children, Richard chose to decline the opportunity to attend college on a partial sports scholarship, in order to increase his ability to be of assistance to his siblings and parents. After high school, he continued working for several years at COPACO in Bloomfield, and later was employed for a time at Union Meat Company in Hartford.
To pursue an interest in radio, Richard resumed his education and was a graduate of The Connecticut School of Broadcasting. Following a short stint on the air as a disc jockey at WKND 1480 AM Radio, when it was owned in the mid-1960's by Ken Dawson, Richard quickly realized that he preferred working off the air as an Account Executive, and began to sell advertising for the station.
When Ken Dawson decided to sell WKND, Richard and a small group of concerned, community-minded activists seized the opportunity to purchase the station, to ensure that the urban voice could speak and be heard within the Greater Hartford area.
Toward the end of the 1960's, Richard also became involved in real estate, when he began working with Harold Rothstein's development company as a supervisor of work crews who were rehabilitating various properties in and around the Hartford area. Inspired also during that time by his brother Roger's involvement in architecture and real estate in Indiana, Richard went back to the classroom to earn licenses as both Real Estate Agent and Broker.
From the 1960's onward, he continued working in both radio and real estate, eventually becoming President as well as CEO of both Greater Hartford Realty Management Corporation, and WKND Radio.
Throughout Richard's career in business, a primary goal was to be of service to the community and encourage positive outcomes, by working together with those who desired to help build and shape a better world. With that in mind, he became involved in numerous boards, organizations, and corporations in the Greater Hartford area and beyond, serving on many as a trustee, director and/or president. In conjunction with his work at WKND, Richard also founded the Greater Hartford Initiative, which has awarded numerous scholarships to a range of students throughout the region for the past 14 years. In recognition of his work to provide better opportunities for Connecticut's youth, Oprah Winfrey donated $100,000 to the scholarship program in 1997. As a result of that gesture, as well as significant additional donations from other WKND-sponsored fundraising efforts since 1994, an endowed scholarship program has existed for a number of years at Central Connecticut State University, and another will be established at the University of Hartford this fall, as a direct result of the recent sale of WKND.
While others labeled him "marathon man" and frequently publicized his achievements, Richard often shared with his family that he really had no interest in compiling a list of accolades, honors and awards received, because "there's too much work to be done, and barely enough time to do it, so why waste more time talking about it?".
A life member of the Moorish Science Temple of America (M. S. T. of A.), Inc., #35, Brother Richard A. Weaver-Bey, was a primary financial supporter of his local Temple for decades.
In keeping with his personal philosophy, Richard rarely spoke publicly about the important role of faith and heritage in his life, because he felt it was necessary to demonstrate its impact through action, thereby enabling others to understand its value more clearly.
To carry on his legacy of service and love for humanity, he leaves four sons: Rajah; Kevin; Terrence (and wife, Jackie); and Brandon; a daughter, Sydney; two grand-daughters; four grandsons; one great-grandson; a brother, Louis; two sisters: Marva Clay-Bey and Sandra Weaver-Bey; an aunt: Mary Lewis; a sister-in-law, Berniece, of Torrington; many nieces and nephews; a number of cousins, including those from the Copes, Bailey and Pittman families; a host of additional cousins, and other relatives. He also leaves his devoted friend, companion and fiancee, Lelieth Furze, as well as a select and very special group of long-term, faithful friends.
Richard was pre-deceased by: his parents; three brothers: John C. (Jr.); Henry A., and Roger L. Weaver-Bey; a brother-in-law, James A. (Sr.) Clay-Bey; a sister-in-law, Zera Weaver-Bey; many aunts and uncles; and his former wife, Yvonne Weaver-Bey Sharp.
A memorial service conducted by the Moorish Science Temple of America, Inc., will be held at the Fuqua Funeral Home, 94 Granby Street, Bloomfield on Saturday May 24th at 12:00 Noon. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to either: The Moorish Science Temple of America, Inc., #35, 159 Vine Street, Hartford, CT 06112; The Mamie and John Weaver-Bey Memorial Scholarship Fund, Unity Plaza, Box 400369, Hartford, CT 06140-0369; or, The Richard Weaver-Bey Memorial Entrepreneur Award, Unity Plaza, Box 400058, Hartford, CT 06140-0058.
Reprinted with permission of the NorthEnd Agent's.
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