A Fundraising Tribute to Wayne Fleury
Friends rally to help his family during tough times.
When Wayne Fleury passed away suddenly on Dec. 7, 2012 he left family and friends behind in shock and sadness.
Fleury had been diagnosed with colon cancer less than three weeks before his death and, frankly, nobody expected him to lose his battle so quickly. As his wife Laura Fleury explained, “Never in our wildest dreams did we think that Wayne wasn’t going to make it through this.”
Wayne Fleury truly loved life and it was hard for anyone to imagine that his had ended at only forty eight years of age.
“He was so optimistic and positive after his diagnoses,” Laura said. “He didn’t want to look at the downside. We were both prepared for a long journey.”
That journey, however, didn’t happen and, today, Fleury’s family and friends are looking for ways to keep his memory and his legacy alive.That effort will include a fundraiser he has planned for Friday night, Jan. 25 at the Tewksbury Knights of Columbus.
A lifelong member of the Tewksbury community, Fleury was well known as a family man who put his wife of 22 years, Laura, and his two sons Bryan and Kyle above and beyond all else.
He spent years as a stay at home dad and was rarely seen without his two boys in tow. “He was the father who took his two boys everywhere he went,” remembered Laura. “That’s how people knew Wayne. He was the dad with the two boys in the grocery store.”
Totally devoted to his sons, Fleury was a frequent volunteer with local kids. “Wayne was always the one to volunteer at the school and go on fieldtrips,” mentioned Laura. “He was never afraid to be around kids. He knew how to put them in their place when they needed it but always did it in a way that they respected and appreciated.”
Long before he was a dad, however, Wayne was busy being a big brother to Marc Fleury. Ten years older than Marc, Wayne walked a fine line between “big brother” and “father figure” when he was a young man. “For a little while it was like I had two dads,” remembered Marc. “I had my own dad and, in addition, I had my ‘big brother/dad’ Wayne. He was always there to take me under his wing and encourage me.”
Even then, Wayne Fleury was both patient and nurturing.
“Every time he saw that I had potential in something he worked hard to encourage it and make me see what I could accomplish. In a nutshell that’s how Wayne treated everyone. Wayne was everyone’s big brother," said Marc.
Anyone who was fortunate enough to have Wayne Fleury on their side knew exactly what that meant. “Wayne had a way of making you feel like you could do anything,” said Marc. “All you had to do was glance over at him for his side smile wink and nod of approval and you knew that you were ok.”
In addition to his family Wayne had one other true love. He was, as his father Hank joked, “Born with a guitar in his hand.” He was passionate about music and performing and became well known in the local area as a dj, a guitar player, an acoustic performer and a member of various bands. Most recently he performed alongside his brother Marc as part of The Liquid Audio Project or, LAP Dance Band for short.
Wayne and his brother Marc were no strangers to playing music together and, over the years, had shared the stage more than once. As Marc remembered, “We would be driving up to a show together and Wayne would say ‘what could be cooler than this?’ I loved that the fact that he loved doing that with me. I was so proud to be his brother.”
Of course, in the Fleury family music was not just limited to the stage. “From the moment I met Wayne’s family I loved them,” remembered Laura. “There wasn’t a single family event that didn’t revolve around music. If you thought you were going to sit down and have a quiet conversation after dinner you were sadly mistaken.”
When he wasn’t busy taking care of his family or onstage playing music, Wayne was also involved with The Tewksbury Knights of Columbus. He first became a knight at the age of twenty one and eventually joined the Tewksbury group in 2007. It didn’t take long for him to become involved in every aspect of the knights and he eventually served as Grand Knight from 2010 – 2011. Among his proudest accomplishments while serving were helping to ban smoking inside the building and getting the new awning built on the side of the building.
“He took so much pride in everything he did,” remembered Laura.
Part of Wayne’s success at the Knights was his absolute honesty.
“Wayne was always honest when he spoke to you,” said Marc. “Because of that you never wanted him to be disappointed in something you had said or done.”
Laura couldn’t agree more, “If Wayne was angry or upset he would tell you exactly how he felt. He cleared it up and moved on.”
Wayne was a dedicated friend who was always willing to do his part for those around him.
“He went out of his way for everyone. If he said he was going to do something for you he always came through,” said Laura. “If you made friends with Wayne you truly had a friend for life.”
It is those friends who have come forward since Wayne’s death and supported his family every step of the way. “The outpouring of support has been absolutely amazing,” said Marc.
Unfortunately, as many people know, while family and friends were busy mourning Wayne’s loss at his wake, thieves were breaking into his family’s home and stealing many of their possessions as well as their peace of mind. Among the items lost was Wayne’s lap top containing his music as well as family photos.
While the memories can never be replaced and the peace of mind will be difficult to restore, Marc hopes that the fundraiser on Friday night will help Wayne’s family begin the process of moving on.
The event will feature live music by Over 6, Columbus Park Acoustic Duo, The Wayne Street Band and LAP Dance Band along with Johnny Joyce to provide comedy for the evening. In addition there will be door prizes raffles and even a silent auction with all proceeds benefiting Wayne’s family.
Tickets are $15 each and include a cash bar as well as a hot buffet. Marc has even promised that there could be a surprise or two. Doors open at 7:00 P.M. For more information you can email Marc Fleury at email@example.com.