Bernard Earl Hamilton Jr. passed away peacefully on February 25, 2020 at Danbury Hospital in Danbury CT. Bernard was born on June 11, 1942 in Bronx, NY to the late Geraldine Melhado (Stephenson) and Bernard Earl Hamilton Sr.
Bernie is survived by his beloved wife Juanita (Reed) Hamilton, son Marc Hamilton (Jennifer), and daughter Cherie Burdick (Doug). In addition, he is also survived by six grandchildren: Madeline Hamilton, Evelyn Hamilton, Liam Burdick, Sean Burdick, Lindsay Burdick, and Jenna Burdick and one great grandchild Zayden Long.
Bernie grew up in The Bronx, New York. Juanita appreciated his interest in college. Bernie graduated from Adelphi University in Long Island, fulfilling the dreams of both of his parents. Bernie worked in the Purchasing department at the Lever Brothers (now Unilever) New York office.
One of Juanita’s fondest memories was of the fun times she and Bernie had entertaining themselves with the activities New York City had to offer. They attended plays, orchestras and even the famous Playboy Club. It was a thrilling change from their past and they enjoyed every minute.
During his early adulthood, he served our country by joining up with the United States Marine Corps Reserves where he served for 6 years before being honorably discharged—a few weeks before the arrival of his first child, Marc.
The addition of a new member to the family was a major event. The glory days of being DINK’s (dual income, no kids) was over! In the midst of raising their first child, Bernie and Juanita moved from a 1 bedroom to a 2 bedroom apartment, adding yet another member to the family, their daughter Cherie.
Bernie’s son Marc and his daughter Cherie learned much from their father and took after him in many ways. He had a love of science, science fiction and history, which certainly rubbed off on them. He could take what could arguably be dry subject matter in a school setting and make you yearn to learn more. He filled in the gaps of missing content from the standard education system, teaching his daughter how her ancestors were kings and queens that came from the richest lands on the planet. He taught his kids the history of their heritage—a mixture of African, Native American, Latino, and German.
His love of New York sports teams rubbed off on his son who is, still to this day a diehard New York Jets fan even though currently living in the Southwest.
He was an avid reader who loved reading books of all types, especially at night before bed. None of his immediate family members will ever forget the memories of Bernie routinely falling asleep in bed, glasses on, with a book laying on his chest.
Those who had the pleasure of knowing Bernie will remember him as a rare gem, one of the kindest, gentlest men they have ever known.
A Graveside Service will be held on Friday February 28, 2020 at Wooster Cemetery (20 Ellsworth Ave, Danbury CT) at 1 p.m.
To light a candle or leave a condolence in his memory, please visit www.DanburyMemorial.com
To plant a tree in memory of Bernard Earl Hamilton, Jr., please visit our tribute store.