The humble giant is how all who knew the late Patrick Irving Fatman Weekes described him, and into today, police were still investigating the circumstances surrounding the his death.
Weekes, died on the spot after he was shot while at Londy’s Bar in Wharton Gap, St. Michael in the early hours this morning.
His sister, Denise told Barbados TODAY words could not expressed how their family was feeling today as the news of his death sunk it.
“My brother was a nice person, he was never in trouble and he never trouble anybody. He was very easy going. My brother don’t even raise he voice and it would tek a lot to really get he angry,” she said.
Fellow entertainers were also in shock. David Prophet Clarke, the organizer of the chanting competition, Rev–O–Dub–O–Lution and who helped Weekes come to national prominence in 1983 through its precursor, said Fatman’s death was a big blow to the dub/dancehall fraternity in Barbados.
He said as a young man, Weekes was energetic, disciplined, humbled and his spirit should be the characteristic of all entertainers.
“Anybody who knows Fatman know we have lost a great soul and a great friend. He didn’t on to greatness in Barbados but he was great and he still performed all over the Caribbean though he didn’t shout about it. It is unfortunate this happened to such an individual.”
Biggie Irie, who along with the late Mighty Whitey and Weekes sang 1000 Pounds of Blubber and Fit For Life, said: “It is very sad thing. I going through my mind from the time I hear about it. It is very sad for his family and the whole of Barbados that an icon in dancehall and dub industry could be cut down like this in a case of [being] in the wrong place at the wrong time, but everybody got the right to go where they feel like. I hope that whoever has done this is brought to justice swiftly. He was always very jovial and always fun, he was a humble and gentle soul.”
Production Manager of the Richard Stoute Teen Talent contest, Merle Niles remembered the 47–year–old, who was said to be the first Barbadian dub artist to perform in Japan, as very disciplined.
“Whenever he had to perform I never had to go looking for him; he would be there dressed, rehearsed and ready to perform. He was quiet, pleasant and very humbled. I am so numb, I was asleep when I got the news. He was such a gentle person… my mind can’t work it out. He was a man on the road to recovery and just so? Just so?” she asked.
In 1984 Weekes won the Teen Talent contest and since then he has been a constant face at the show. In 2008, he was involved in a vehicular accident which left his right femur broken. As a result it had to be outfitted with a metal plate and he walked with a cane. So two years ago, the 2011 season of the contest was held in his honour to raise funds for his assistance.
Founder of the competition, Richard Stoute told Barbados TODAY that having performed last week, Weekes was scheduled to appeared at the second semi–final this coming Sunday.
“My head is mixed–up. He and I were very close, we talked almost every week. I kept him involved in the Teen Talent. Up to yesterday we talked and I asked if he was coming to the show. He said since he was performing next week he would come one time, so I told him we would talk during the week when he came for rehearsals. I had no idea this would be the last time I would speak to him,” said Stoute.
The veteran entertainer called for more outreach programs to help the perpetrators of these violent crimes before they reached the stage of violence. He said if he had access to the Empire Cinema he would open it daily and invite all the boys on the block who were not working there to talk and be heard because he believe they just need someone to listen.
“It is difficult to understand why a man so peaceful could be taken like this – he was a gentleman. I am saddened by his loss. Despite all the difficulties he faced, the pain he was going through, the financial difficulties, the diabetes, he still made himself happy and brought joy to the lives of others when he performed. It is really hard to lose him like that. It was not easy for him but he never gave up the fight.
“In my experience in the Teen talent I realize sometimes people just need to be heard, a lot of people were reformed because we listened and they felt that no one listened to them before. We need to do something, just make an effort to eliminate the murders. It happening daily, it really is getting out of control. Barbados is getting unsafe and we have to do something about it now and bring some sanity to the situation. Sometimes in this life people see you and don’t take the time to understand you.”
Fatman resided at President Kennedy Drive in St. Michael. He had no children and leaves to mourn his four sisters and two brothers. (KC)