Guy Wilkins

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Mr. Guy "went to the stars” as he called it, on Nov. 5, 2011. He was singing, painting, taking pictures, making videos, socializing, telling stories, joking, right up to the last. He had spent the summer at home in Wachapreague after recovering well from knee surgery in Chapel Hill. That summer was a gift, in hindsight--to Guy and his many friends on the Eastern Shore. He had such a good time visiting with old buddies again and was working hard. The 24-hour “art machine” as his kids always called it, was in full swing and he did some amazing works during that time. But it was to be a final burst of creativity before the leukemia he had been afflicted with since 2009 went out of control in October.

Guy wanted his casket decorated and to have some of his paintings displayed at the funeral. A tall order for a grieving family. Daughter Kate’s friend Dino Consalvo, an Australian artist, stayed up all night collaging pieces of Guy’s paintings to the coffin lid--permanently. (And exactly how he did that is a longer story). Meanwhile old friends the Bilickis organized an exhibit of twenty paintings at their gallery a block from Powelton Presbyterian Church in Wachapreague, so guests at the memorial could go there afterwards. The small church was packed and the celebratory service conducted by Rev. Bill Moore was exactly what Guy would have wanted. His children, grandchildren, cousins, and friends spoke of him in glowing terms. Whatever else he was in life, Guy was a devoted father and loyal friend. Honoring his requests for colorful attire, the pallbearers got together and wore shirts of different hot colors, as close as possible to Guy's bright palette.

Guy's coffin_Memorial Service_Nov 12_11

Exhibition_Memorial Nov 12

So Guy got his wish for a Funeral / Art Show that was truly miraculous, considering the suddenness of his departure. No problem for the “old leprechaun” as an astute appreciator of his art once dubbed him. Guy’s service also featured live music from grandson Schuyler who rocked it, and from soloist Marilyn Kellam, whose voice could transport anyone to the stars.

The Wachapreague Museum of Modern Art has closed, but Guy lives on in his art--and in the hearts of his friends and family. Guy's children always knew that, as much love as he gave them, they shared their dad with the world. And the friends in Guy's World gave it all back to him.

Guy’s been partying with Elvis lately. He says Heaven's a bit like Las Vegas.