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How did Damon Weaver die? Florida man, 23, interviewed Barack Obama at 11 and asked him to be his 'homeboy'

'He was always positive, always had a smile on a face and he was always a joy to be around'
UPDATED MAY 16, 2021
Former President Barack Obama and Damon Weaver (White House)
Former President Barack Obama and Damon Weaver (White House)

The student reporter who caught national attention when he interviewed former President Barack Obama at the White House in 2009 has died of natural causes at 23, his family says.

Damon Weaver, the youngest person to interview a sitting president died on May 1, his sister, Candace Hardy, told the Palm Beach Post. “He was loved by everyone,” Hardy told the outlet. “No matter if it was a stranger, his mom or a family member, he was just a ball of light with so much energy. He was always positive, always had a smile on a face and he was always a joy to be around. He left an impact on a lot of people.” Further details were not released. He had been studying communications at Albany State University in Georgia. 


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The funeral home posted on Facebook: "“He saw the road was getting rough, And the hills were hard to climb. So He closed your weary eyelids, And whispered “Peace be thine.” It broke our hearts to lose you, But you did not go alone; for part of us went with you, The day God called you home." With sadness in our hearts the Brown & Bussey’s Funeral Services LLC and the Weaver family announces the passing of Mr Damon Lazar Weaver AKA “BAMA” of South Bay, Florida formally Pahokee Florida, answered his Savior's call to enter eternal rest on Saturday, May 1, 2021. The arrangements at this time are forthcoming but we do ask that you keep Mr Weaver’s family in your most sincere prayers."

Weaver was just 11 when he interviewed Obama for 10 minutes in the Diplomatic Room on August 13, 2009, asking questions that focused primarily on education. He covered school lunches, bullying, conflict resolution and how to succeed. Weaver then asked Obama to be his "homeboy," saying then-Vice President Joe Biden had already accepted. "Absolutely," a smiling Obama said, shaking the boy's hand.

He used that meeting to later interview Oprah Winfrey and athletes like Dwyane Wade. "He was just a nice person, genuine, very intelligent," Hardy said. "Very outspoken, outgoing. He never said no to anybody." Weaver got his start in fifth grade when he volunteered for the school newscast at KE Cunningham/Canal Point Elementary in a farm community on the shores of Lake Okeechobee. "Damon was the kid who ran after me in the hall to tell me he was interested," his teacher, Brian Zimmerman, told the outlet in 2016. "And right away, I just saw the potential for the way he was on camera. You could see his personality come through. He wasn't nervous being on camera."

Weaver’s foray into journalism started when he was in fifth grade when he volunteered for the school newscast. He did his graduation from Royal Palm Beach High School where he earned a scholarship to Albany State University in Georgia. Most recently, Weaver had been living in West Palm Beach and planned to return to Albany State in the fall to continue working toward a degree in communications. His goal was to cover the NFL as a sports journalist.

A private funeral service limited to family was held yesterday at St John Baptist Church in Belle Glade, Florida.