Children pay tribute to ‘energetic and fun-loving’ father
The children of a 51-year-old bartender who died in a road crash have paid tribute to their “energetic and fun-loving“ father.
Devin and Pier Simons also thanked the community for helping to raise more than £9,350 in two weeks to help cover the cost of a memorial.
Wayne “Gussy” Augustus, a bartender at Bermuda Fun Golf in Dockyard, died after his motorcycle crashed on South Road, Southampton, near Church Bay at about 3.15am on March 26.
The family set up a GoFundMe page with a goal of £10,000 to pay for a fitting memorial to Mr Augustus.
Mr Simons, 18, said: “I just want to say an incredible thank you. I don’t know how we would have been able to pay for my dad’s funeral without it. We really do appreciate it.”
He said that his father was a “strong and hard-working man” who always put his family first.
He added: “There was one time where me and a few friends went to Fun Golf to go play some mini golf and my dad was working.
“Being the guy that he is – always so energetic and fun-loving – he would come up and try to embarrass me a little bit while I’m in front of the girls.”
Mr Simons said: “For the most part he was always so friendly and helpful to my friends.
“If somebody wasn’t too great at golf and hit the ball in the water he’d tell them ‘it’s perfectly fine, no need to be embarrassed’.
“Then he would teach them how to play and where to shoot so that they had a better chance at winning.
“But he was just always so fun and very helpful to everybody around him.”
Ms Simons, Mr Augustus’s 22-year-old daughter, said her father was the primary breadwinner for the family and that she set up the fundraiser to give him a proper memorial.
She added that many people were suspicious at first, thinking that the GoFundMe page was a scam because the target was set in British pounds.
Ms Simons explained: “GoFundMe doesn’t work in Bermuda and I had to tie it to a UK address, so I just used my aunt’s address who lived in England.”
She added that, as soon as people learnt it was a legitimate cause, the donations came in droves.
Ms Simons said: “A lot of people were just happy to donate and willing to donate, even if it was just £5.
“I saw the money increase in just a few hours because so many people were willing to help and I was very surprised.”
She added: “He was always willing to help other people so I think that’s why people are so willing to help him out at this present moment, and us.”
Ms Simons said that her uncle, Randy Simons, planned to put together a golf tournament to further raise cash for the memorial. The date and place has yet to be determined.
She said that her father was “a very attentive and very passionate individual” who supported his children at every opportunity.
She added that her father taught her skills like bartending and dancing – the latter of which inspired her to take up several performance arts and become a musician.
“He was my rock – if I called him up he would always answer. He also thought highly of me and my brother.
“Every single time I had a performance we would always attend, or if my brother had a rugby game he would always think ‘I have to go and support my children’.”
Pc Garwin Phillips is investigating Mr Augustus’s death and anyone with information should call 211 or 295-0011, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
To donate to Mr Augustus’ GoFundMe page, click here.
Anyone who knew Mr Augustus and would like to share their photographs, videos or memories of him can do so here.