Vernon Shabaka Thompson

Angela.  I am so sorry for your loss.  My wife, Sarver, and I met Shabaka when all of us were attending Central School of Speech and Drama in London back in 1987.  Partially because none of us were British, we all gravitated towards one another.   I credit him with helping me deal with the adjustment of moving far away from home.  We had all had some special times and very late nights together.   

Shabaka was always a caretaker and one who looked out for others.  A complicated personality; he was as serious and passionate as he was silly and irreverent.   In the years to follow, Shabaka used his talent and passion to look after the children of the great African diaspora in every way that he could.  It was beautiful to see the leader he was growing in to.

Shabaka could shake a room with his voice when excited.  He proudly called himself “loud and broad.”  This proved to be quite true.  But he was also kind, gentle and nurturing.  He will always be with us in our hearts and I would not be the man I am today without his influence.   He will be missed but I know that Heaven was made more rich upon his arrival.


Hank Coyote Wagner

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