Roanoke community leader Tim Dayton passed away but his legacy lives on

Dayton passed away after a year-long battle with cancer

Tim Dayton, founder of Roanoke nonprofit, passes away
Tim Dayton, founder of Roanoke nonprofit, passes away

ROANOKE, Va. – Roanoke community leader Tim Dayton passed away Monday night after a year-long battle with stage IV pancreatic cancer.

Always serving Roanoke first, he led the First Christian Church and founded the non-profit REACH.

From hosting memorable summer camps to recently receiving an award for his efforts to revitalize neighborhood housing, Tim Dayton’s name will not be forgotten.

On a webpage where he wrote about his battle with cancer, Dayton’s family posted a message about a memorial.

“Per our father’s request, we are not having a service. This is what he shared about his wishes regarding a memorial:

“I have always said that at the end of the day we each want to go to sleep knowing that we’ve made a difference. And as I reflect back on my life, I see this current phase as both a continuation of that wisdom and a recognition that it will be others who go on making that difference. This has led me to plan a celebration of life, not my life, but a celebration of all life and more importantly a celebration of what we’re collectively doing to make life the best it can be for as many beings as possible.

To celebrate his 66 years of life, plans are underway to honor his legacy with a day of service on October 23.

“The kids and him came up with an idea of a day in service,” Tim Dayton’s wife, Bonnie, said. “That was something that really made him lit up. He was really excited about that.”

Bonnie said people outside of Roanoke that Tim’s kindness touched are also planning to host a day of service in his memory in their own towns.


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