Obituary: Melvin Mason, 43, Stratford Star editor

Melvin Mason, 43, passed away at his New Haven home on September 26, 2018.

Melvin Luke Mason was born on November 6, 1974 in Brooklyn, New York. He was the middle child of Vera and Herbert Mason. He grew up with his older brother Alfonzo and his younger sister Genevieve (Genny) in the East New York section of Brooklyn. His oldest sister, Marlene Mason resided in Toronto, Ontario with his nephew and niece Adrian and Raquel.

Melvin attended Thomas Jefferson High School and graduated in 1992. Shortly after graduation, he met his best friend Mark, who he would go on to share a lifelong friendship. He then went on to study Journalism at Syracuse University in the fall of that year. While at Syracuse, Melvin served as a writer for the university newspaper.

Melvin spent his childhood in Brooklyn being a wonderful brother, loving son, and a good friend. His first love was baseball, which he played every chance he got. Playing baseball introduced him to his favorite sports team, the New York Yankees. During this time he developed his lifelong love of sports and journalism. He was an extremely nice person who treated his fellow man with dignity and respect. To know him was to love him.

During his college years, he earned an internship with New York Newsday, where he met his lifelong friend and mentor, Gary Witherspoon. After his graduation from Syracuse in 1996, Melvin went on to work as a reporter for the Cortland Standard in Potsdam, New York. He earned his stripes in the frigid and icy northern New York tundra, and moved to warmer pastures as a reporter for the Daily News Record in Harrisonburg, Virginia in 2002. In the summer of 2006, he took a job as a reporter for the Connecticut Post and moved to Derby, Connecticut.

A lifelong sports fan, he spent his free time following his favorite teams — the New York Yankees, the New York Jets, the New York Rangers and the Syracuse Orange.

Melvin joined the HAN Network as a reporter for The Darien Times in July 2013. In January, 2015, he became the editor of the Stratford Star. His work included covering the town of Stratford and being the voice of the town.

Later that year, Melvin’s life changed again when he met his future wife, Alison Garner, of Brooklyn, New York. The couple spent their first date bonding over their shared love of words at Remo’s Pizza in Stamford, and became inseparable. In late 2016, Alison moved in with Melvin in Derby and took a job as a Development Director for the All-Stars Project in Bridgeport. The couple married on May 5, 2017, and Melvin became stepfather to her seven-year old daughter Laura.

The family moved to New Haven in July, 2017. Melvin was not shy about sharing his love for his wife with the world. He often posted loving scribes to her on Facebook and spoke glowingly of her to everyone he met.

For the next year, the couple spent their time working and raising their daughter, traveling to hot air balloon festivals and spending time with their mentees. In April, 2018, Melvin became a member of the Eta Alpha Lambda chapter Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated. This was the realization of a dream 22 years in the making. Melvin served his community through his fraternity by participating in park cleanups, high school mentoring and serving in the food pantry.

Melvin was above all else a good friend and joy to all who knew him. His passing has caused a great hole and much pain for his family and friends, but we are all better for having known him. He leaves behind his wife of 16 months, Alison, his 8-year-old stepdaughter Laura, his older brother Alfonzo, his older sister Marlene, his younger sister Genevieve, and his best friends Mark Thomas, Sperry Younger and Brian Gilliard, in addition to a host of cousins, nieces, nephews, friends and colleagues.

A celebration of his life will take place Friday, October 5, 2018 at 11:00 AM at Howard K. Hill Funeral Services, 1287 Chapel St, New Haven, CT 06511. Friends may call Friday at the funeral home from 10:00-11:00 AM. Interment will be at Evergreen Cemetery, New Haven.

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