Cover photo for Welton Walter Barclay 's Obituary
Welton Walter Barclay  Profile Photo
1946 Welton 2018

Welton Walter Barclay

June 8, 1946 — June 18, 2018

The Legacy of Welton Walter Barclay
Welton Walter Barclay was the long-awaited son born to the union of the late Bishop Fitz-Hubert Everson Barclay, Sr. and Geraldine Williams Barclay following the birth of three sisters. Born on June 8, 1946, Welton was the last of four siblings born in the Republic of Panama before the family completed its migration to the United States in 1949.
Affectionately known as “Clay,” Welton was proud of his rich international family heritage and frequently traveled abroad to maintain family connections in Panama, Costa Rica, Jamaica, and Sweden. His maternal grandparents, Benjamin Williams and Georgina Hines Williams, were born on the west coast of the island of Jamaica in Little London, Westmoreland Parish. On the paternal side, Welton's grandparents, the late Reverend Walter Elias Barclay and Marie Louise Cowell Barclay originated from the east coast of Jamaica in St. Thomas Parish. In 1913, his grandparents migrated to Panama where both of his grandfathers worked in constructing of the Panama Canal, one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World. Many family members still reside in Panama. Other family members of this generation migrated to Costa Rica to participate in the Costa Rican railroad development.
Welton made numerous trips to visit family members abroad and much like the model of his parents, he was generous and committed to investing in the younger generation of his birthplace. He was deeply grateful for the range of opportunities his family enjoyed in the United States and frequently expressed his gratitude. "We are a blessed family and the beneficiaries of opportunities made possible through the favor of God. Therefore, to much is given, much is required.” Ironically, Welton and his wife, Rolene, along with several other family members, had already purchased tickets for an August trip to Panama and Costa Rica for the annual celebration of West Indian contributions to development in Central American.
Welton accepted the Lord at an early age while attending Calvary Bible Church on Chicago's west-side. He confirmed his faith in Christ before departure from this life and affirmed that he was prepared to meet his parents, sister, Vranda, granddaughter, Cie DS Ortiz and a host of other family members who preceded him in heaven. Beginning at a very early age and throughout his life, Welton was well-known for his commitment to serving the sick, shut-in, and community youth needing support and guidance. He frequently visited homes, hospitals and nursing facilities to bring comfort, joy, gifts and support. A quiet disciple, he was a living example of commitment to those in need and a wonderful model of Christian service in daily practice who always focused on the positive qualities of individuals.
Welton grew up in Chicago and attended Carter and Betsy Ross Elementary Schools before graduating from Englewood High School in 1965. In high school, he played football and sang in the choir. Following high school, Welton enrolled in Wilson Jr. College and worked a variety of jobs to support his educational pursuits in the trade industry. He was a master of many trades, but most proud of his achievement as a Journeyman Pipefitter. Welton worked for GMAC for thirty-nine years and served on the executive board of the local union. After moving up the ranks as journeyman for the company, he retired January 1, 2007.
Welton and Rolene met through a mutual friend and were joined in holy matrimony on May 29, 1982. They shared a rich life together growing as a couple and enjoyed traveling, learning about different cultures, spending time with family, and mentoring and encouraging the younger generations. He loved fishing. He especially enjoyed fishing and sailing at his lake house in Cassopolis, Michigan with family and friends.
Welton was a father to many children who embraced him as their own. He leaves to cherish and celebrate his life: a loving wife, Rolene Jemison Barclay, of 36 years; his children: Alastair M. Jemison, Vita Clarence Stokes, and Cynthia Bailey; grandchildren: Jalexis Evans-Jemison, Verynthia, Malcolm, and Vashon; and eight great-grandchildren; eleven siblings: Gina Barclay-McLaughlin (James) of Knoxville, TN. Herma Barclay Williams (Eric) of Silver Springs, MD. Celene Barclay Cole (Joseph) of Chicago, IL. Samuel Barclay, of Chicago, IL. FitzHubert Barclay, Jr., of Chicago, IL. Ernest Barclay (Delores) of Ormond Beach, FL. Dorothea Barclay Ridgeway of Waukegan, IL. Thomas (Yvette) of Chicago, IL. Lester Barclay (Sue) of Chicago, IL. Aaron Griffin of MI. and Lamont (Michelle) of Tampa, FL. and a host of cousins, nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.
A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, July 21, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. at Allen Chapel AME Church, 3000 Rural St, Rockford, IL 61107. The Repass will be held Saturday, July 21, 2018 from 1:30 p.m. until 3:30 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Hoffman House Banquet Hall, 7550 E State St, Rockford, IL 61108. Cremation rites accorded with Fitzgerald Funeral Home and Crematory, 1860 S. Mulford Rd. Rockford, IL 61108. Share online condolences at

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Service Schedule

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Memorial Service

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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