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On the 18th of April, 2015 Wesley Burton was killed by a hit-and-run driver in Oakland. He left behind a vibrant young family: his wife Lucrecia and their three children Santiago, Enrique, and Samaya. He is also survived by his mother, Lydia Sweatt; step-father, John Sweatt; brother, Stanley Burton Jr., sisters, Jenera Burton, and Chrysta Marie Burton; and grandmother, Charity Lois Burton.
His radio family at KPFA in Berkeley, where he was a board operator for the station and host of After Hours Radio and Side Show Radio, also mourn his passing. Wesley’s ties to the Bay Area radio scene run deep, and he was a key part of the Youth Radio family as well.
Wesley was both a student and one of our early peer teachers back in the 90’s. Wesley made such a big impact on the shape of Youth Radio’s little family back that then it is actually hard to remember when he actually started here. The Youth Radio so many of us recognize started with the class Wesley was a part of, and he stuck around—helping to train a generation of students who have gone on to be a vital part of Bay Area broadcasting.
His absence is felt, but his legacy remains.
A Go Fund Me account has been established for his wife and children, and we urge you to consider contributing. Wesley was the breadwinner in the family.
A private memorial service for family and friends is being held on Thurs. April 30th at 11AM at St. Patrick Church in Oakland.
There will be a public memorial held at KPFA Radio (1929 MLK Jr. Way, Berkeley) on Saturday May 2nd from noon to 6PM for members of the community. Folks are being asked to bring food to share, and if they’d like, to wear professional Oakland sports team apparel.
This page will serve as our—far too small—tribute to Wesley.
Members of the Youth Radio community who have anything to share—photos, stories, you name it—are encouraged to contact Noah Nelson (noah at youth radio dot org) and he will add them to the collection here.