Gene The Mentor
Gene Weldon changed my life for the better. I was at a point in life where I really didn’t know what I wanted to do. College wasn’t for me at time and I really wasn’t doing anything to better myself. I was at Mrs. Geri and Gene’s house one night visiting John Ross when Gene recommended joining the Navy. He told me all about his adventures and how it made him into the man he was today. I joined the Navy that year and will be forever grateful that he gave me a path to follow. I never got to say goodbye to Gene, but I know he knew I loved him.
Gene Weldon -Southern gentleman, father, husband and role model. When I was six years old I moved from New York to South Carolina. It was there that I met one of my life-long best friends in John Ross Cramer, Gene Weldon’s stepson. In the years to follow, I would come to spend many days and nights in the Weldon household where I learned some of life’s most important lessons, lessons that I still hold dear to me today. Of all the lessons I learned in the Weldon household, it was the respect that Gene and Geri demanded every single day that had the biggest impact on my life. After every statement, question, or response, there would be a sir or a ma’am to follow. If not, you would be hastily reminded. To this day, as a 28-year-old man, I still address each and every elder I speak to with a “sir” or a “ma’am.” This simple, yet meaningful understanding of respect for your elders will be passed down to my children and my children’s children. Although I did not get to spend much time with Gene during his final days, I do believe that he lived a truly meaningful life and that he left this lace better than it was before he arrived. He married a wonderful woman, who was the equivalent of a second mother to me. He helped raise an outstanding man in John Ross and an equally amazing young woman in Hayes. He got to play the world’s second best sport (behind soccer of course) nearly every day. Myself, along with many of his stepson John Ross’s friends will always remember him above all as a good man, a true southern gentleman, a loving father, a loyal husband and of course, a role model. Thank you Gene Weldon – from all the boys – we love you and we miss you.
What a great guy, mentor to all of us when we were all growing up, always there for us, from coaching us in baseball to being at the high school soccer games, and just supporting us all. I remember going over to John Ross Cramer and Geri Weldon’s house and just talking with him, laughing with him, getting advice about life, school, about growing up, being there through all the good and the bad, and just always giving everything he could to our group of friends and family, his family, and the community. We will never forget you and all you have done for us and may you rest in peace Gene.
Thank you Gene for being a father figure to all of us and for always making me laugh. You knew how to bring the best out of people and you were always someone I looked up to. Your caring personality touched so many and I’ll never for that. We will miss you.